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History of Buffalo 


Erie County 


Compiled by 



FiNLEY H. Greenj:, Chairman 

JULY 4, 1919 


Copyright. 1920. 


Daniel J. Sweeney 




Soldier Mothers of Buffalo and Erie County 

Who Bravely Gave Their Boys to the 

Cause of Universal Democracy, 

This Book, in the 

Grateful Remembrance of a Patriotic Community, 

IS Respectfully Dedicated 

















































Preface 11 

Introductory — Buffalo 13 

With Minds Unshod of War 20 

Monroe Doctrine Rocks on Its Base 24 

Scenting the Battle Afar 27 

Preparedness Seed is Sown 29 

U. of B. Company in National Guard 32 

Governor Whitman at First Preparedness Meeting 34 

Patriotism Unleashed by June Day Parade 37 

Unequipped Regiments Called to Mexico 41 

Troop I Off to Border — Colonels Wolf and Babcock Relieved 44 

Germany's First Peace Proposal 46 

Mayor's Americanization Committee at Work 48 

City Welcomes Returning Soldiers 51 

Allies Decline Peace Terms 53 

Chamber of Commerce Urges Armed Guards for Local Plants 55 

Elmwood Music Hall Mass Meeting Declares for War 58 

Naval Militia Off to War— Soldiers Guard Water Front 62 

Rush for Marriage Licenses Congests City Clerk's Office 64 

Flag Raising Ceremonies and Pulpit Appeals 67 

Uncle Sam's Plan to Raise a National Army 70 

Louis P. Fuhrmann— Buffalo's War Mayor 1914 to 1917 72 

Volunteer Army to Administer Selective Service Law 74 

Tony Monanco by Name : Water Boy by Occupation 76 

I Am An American 78 

Registration Day, June 5, 1917 80 

Twenty Exemption Districts for Erie County 83 

Exemption District Machinery in Operation 90 

Rann's Appeal Agent Volunteers 92 

Unlimited Service by Members of Buffalo Bar 95 

District Board Number Three 97 

"The Rose of No Man's Land" 100 

Coal Shortage Through Winter of 1917-1918 103 

Peace Proposal of Pope Benedict XV 105 

Guardsmen Spend Summer of 1917 in Buffalo Camp 107 

Festival of Light and Song — A Formal Good-By Ill 

National Army of the United States 117 

Amid Cheers and Tears Guardsmen Leave Home 121 

George S. Buck, War Mayor 1918-1919 125 

Fort Porter Plays Its Part in World War 128 

Base Hospital No. 23 130 

Wheatless Days in Buffalo Hotels 135 

With Don Martin in London 138 

Lieut. Harold B. Wertz, First Division U. S. A 140 

Smoke Ammunition from the Buffalo News 141 

And the Navy Took Them Over 145 

Aboard an American Transport 150 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 

Chapter Page 

XLVI 77th Division Within Thunder of Guns 152 

XLVII Seeing Paris with Don Martin 154 

XLVI 1 1 Germany's March Drive Crushes British Defense 157 

XLIX Lightless, Heatless, Gasless Days 159 

L Buffalo Women Face the Hun 163 

LI American AlHed Exposition and Bazaar 169 

LII Second Red Cross Drive 171 

LIII "Can They Get to Calais?" 175 

LIV Buffalo Draft Men of 78th Division in France 179 

LV In Mrs. Vanderbilt's Paris Hospital with Doris Kellogg 181 

LVI Buffalo Marines in Battle of Belleau Wood 183 

LVII House Warming Party for 77th Division at Baccarat 192 

LVIII Smashing the Marne Salient 194 

LIX Maj. Donovan at the Battle of the Ourcq 199 

LX First American Army Formed 204 

LXI Girls at Canteens Carry on Through the Hot Summer 205 

LXII Germany's Dead Mark Trail of American Advance 209 

LXIII 108th Infantry Enters Front Line at Mt. Kemmel 211 

LXIV 77th Division in the Hell Hole Valley of the Vesle 217 

LXV Battle of St. Mihiel— Death of Capt. Piatt 223 

LXVI Planning the Decisive Battle of the War 229 

LXVII General Nolan of Akron — Hero of Apremont 231 

LXVIII 77th Division Enters Argonne— Col. Jewett Decorated 238 

LXIX Maj. Whittlesey's Battalion, 77th Division 242 

LXX Lieut. Wilhelm, Buffalo, in "Lost Battalion" 244 

LXXI Lost Battalion's Dead Still Hold the Position 248 

LXXII Buffalo Artillerymen Wreck Forges on the Meuse 253 

LXXIII Breaking the Great Hindenburg Line 255 

LXX IV Death of Don Martin— A Soldier of the Pen 265 

LXXV Sinkingof the "Mary Alice" 268 

LXXVI 77th Division Before Grand Pre 270 

LXX VI I Grand Pre Proves a Buffalo Sepulcher 272 

LXXVIII Twenty Days on the Meuse With the Old 65th 281 

LXXIX St. Souplet and Across Le Selle 285 

LXXX On a Field of Carnage Donovan Fell 289 

LXXXI Putting the Last One Over With the Old 65th 292 

LXXXII General Pershing's Story of the Final Days 294 

LXXXIII Buffalo Tank Corps Fighters— Treat 'em Rough 299 

LXXXIV Handling Gas on the Western Front 301 

LXXXV Honors for Greatest Gains to 77th Division 303 

LXXXVI U. of B. and Canisius Student Army Corps 305 

LXXXVII Battling Above the Clouds 307 

LXXXVIII On the Western Front 11 A. M., November 11, 1918 313 

LXXXIX Paris With the Lid Off 318 

XC Celebrating the Kaiser's Funeral 320 

XCI Lieut. Colonel Pooley Leads Regiment into Germany 322 

XCII Buffalo Boys Stand by as German Fleet Surrenders 325 

XCIII When Johnny Came Marching Home 327 

XCIV Putting Handcuffs on Disloyalty 340 

XCV Four Minute Men of Buffalo . i 343 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 

Chapter Page 

XCVI The Schools— The Children— The Teachers 345 

XCVII Pasting the City with War Stamps 357 

XCVIII Buffalo Chapter, American Red Cross 368 

XCIX Boy Scouts Lend a Helping Hand 380 

C The Military Training Camps Association 383 

CI The United States Grain Corporation 387 

CII What We Paid for Heat, Food and Clothing 390 

cm Work of the Food Administrator 397 

CIV National League for Woman's Service 404 

CV The World War in Verse 405 

CVI New 74th Regiment Infantry, N. G. S. N. Y 412 

CVII New 65th Regiment Infantry, N. G. S. N. Y 414 

CVIII Buffalo at Home and Her Visitors 417 

CIX Home Defense Committee of Erie County 422 

CX Child Welfare Program in War Time 424 

CXI Belgian Relief Fund Committee 426 

CXII Buffalo Police Reserves 427 

CXIII For France and Her Allies 428 

CXIV The Buffalo Thrift Kitchen 430 

CXV Local Hygiene Lecture Campaign 433 

CXVI Five Liberty Loan Campaigns 434 

CXVII Independence Day, July 4, 1919 487 

CXVIII In Conclusion 490 

Buffalo and Erie County Roster 

Our Heroic Dead 495 

Erie County's Volunteer Chaplains 508 

U. S. Army— Buffalo Roll Call 509 

108th Regiment U. S. Infantry 612 

106th Field Artillery 618 

102d Trench Mortar Battery 623 

U.S. Navy 624 

U. S. Marines 664 

Base Hospital No. 23— Male Members 675 

Buffalonians in Polish Army 676 

Red Cross Leaders 679 

Red Cross Nurses 680 

Buffalo Doctors Commissioned in Army and Navy 682 

Volunteer Medical Service Corps — Buffalo Women 683 

Young Men's Christian Association 684 

Salvation Army 685 

Knights of Columbus 685 

Jewish Welfare Workers 685 

Volunteers in U. S. Telephone Service 686 

Erie County's Service Roster 687 

Arthur W. Kreinheder John F. Malone 

George S. Buck, Mayor 
Frederick G. Baglev Charles M. Heald 


Howard A. Forman Walter P. Cooke James B. Stafford 

Fuel Administrator Chairman Liberty Loan Committee Food Administrator, Buffalo 

Charles Kennedy Robert W. Pomeroy Edward H. Butler 

Food Administration Grain Corporation Chairman Red Cross Drives Chairman War Savings Stamp Committee 

Oliver Cabana, Jr. William A. Rogers Frank S. McGraw 

Food Administrator, Erie County Chairman United War Workers Chairman Red Cross Committee 

Col. Henry C. Jewett 

316th Engineers — 91st Division 
Hero of Montfaucon 


Col. William J. Donovan 

165th Infantry 

Rev. John C. Ward 

Chaplain lOSth Infantry 
Hero of Hindenburg Line and St. Souplet 

Brig. Genl. Dennis E. Nolan 

Of Genl. Pershing's Staff 
Hero of Apremont 

■42d Division 
Hero of the Ourcq and the Argonne 

Lieut. Col. William R. Pooley 

7th Infantry — lid Division 
First Erie County Commander to cross the Rhine 

Daniel J. Sweeney 

World War History Committee 

FiNLEV H. Greene 

World War History Committee 


BUFFALO will one day realize the tremendous gi'owth and development which its geo- 
graphical location makes inevitable. As the years go by and we roll along toward 
that period of community greatness, Buffalonians will search through the wi-itten pages 
to visualize in pride or humility their community ancestry, just as the individual beams or 
scowls ovei- his family tree. While men do not live in the past there is always a companion- 
ship and an abiding interest in those who cut the path ahead of us, and history is ever a 
congenial friend on the library shelf. 

In these late days of 1918 and early days of 1919 we are too close to the World War to com- 
pile a history of the war, but we can aim to produce a narrative in which we shall outline and 
depict the activities of the men and women of Buffalo and the surrounding towns during the 
years from 1914 to 1919 — an historical period. In that narrative we shall endeavor to portray — 
perhaps 'twill be in a homely and inartistic way — but as accurately as man can, the events 
at home and abroad in which Buffalonians and their neighbors participated. 

In the chapters as they unfold the reader may expect to find : first, the record of the aver- 
age American's early indifference to war reflected in Buffalo; then the indefatigable efforts of a 
few patriots to arouse the community to the need for preparedness, the organization of the 
National Army, the camps and the training of men, the overseas expeditions and the glorious 
epic of Buffalo and Erie County boys on the battlefields of France and Belgium, suffer- 
ing wounds inflicted by gas and shrapnel and machine gun bullets; fighting and dying, but 
ever with their faces forward. And the reader may expect, also, to find chronicled the tre- 
mendous task which fell to the men, the women and the children at home in the struggle 
that was waged to make all the world safe for democi-acy. 

This book was written when the facts were fresh in the minds of those who have so gen- 
erously contributed to it. Indeed, this preface was in the course of preparation by the 
editor in the office of the City Clerk in the City and County Hall on that November day, 
1918, when the erroneous report of the signing of the armistice threw the community into 

Outside! All around! Even about the City Hall, removed fi'om the main arteries of 
travel, the crowds were surging back and forth in the streets. Crowd leaders were endeavor- 
ing to marshal their followers in the semblance of parade formation. Here and thei-e por- 
tions of what once might have been a band gave out voluminously, if not harmoniously, the 
strains of martial music. Confetti was everywhere, and from the highest windows of the 
office buildings on the corner girls were thi'owing out spai'kling clouds of paper clipped to 
snowflake size. Happiness in confusion appeared to have achieved its greatest triumph. 
Enthusiasm was at its topmost pitch. The marchers, as their respective banners indicated, 
were drawn from the great munition plants, from the high schools, from the law offices, from 
the department stores and made up a cosmopolitan crowd from the avenues and institutions 
where men and women earn their livelihood, or prepare themselves therefor. 

It was among such surroundings I plodded on in the task pi-eviously undertaken of 
preparing in an official way for historical reference the story of Buffalo's part in the war. 


12 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

Contemporaneous writers whose individual capacity for the task far overshadows mine 
abound. But unfortunately perhaps for this work, it happened that I had been closely 
associated with Buffalo's wai- program from the first day until, at least, the present hour. 

Compilations of this sort are usually the result of painstaking effort. I surely will bow in 
grateful appreciation if this one shall be deemed worthy of that last word of commendation. 
The book can claim a foundation of information obtained at first hand, and to that extent 
it will be a substantial edifice. Though its ornamentations may not be suggestive of the 
broadest culture nor the highest scholarship, it will deal with men as they were and events as 
they transpired among the masses of our citizenship. An inspiring skyline, a knowledge 
that it is a story of the splendid sacrifices and brilliant achievements of a patriotic people 
will tend, I am sure, to hold even the balance so that just recognition may be accorded to 
each, whether his task was performed under the rays of heroic splendor on the battlefield or 
in the equally arduous but less dangerous and more dimly illuminated walks of civic war work. 

This record is not set down for the men and women of to-day. They have heai-d the shouts 
I have heard, and viewed all the scenes I have seen. Most of them have been participants 
in the local activities to the same extent. They therefore need no wi-itten narration. To them 
this would be simply a ponderous volume, for the most part unattractive and without fasci- 
nation. But for the children, the men and women of Buffalo of to-morrow, it is hoped it will 
serve a useful pui'pose. 

The reader may be compelled to pass wearily over many of its pages. The editor furnishes 
a narrative. Style for its own sake often captivates while the story runs barren of in- 
terest. Most of us seek the pages that throb and glow. I cherish, perhaps vainly, but 
nevertheless earnestly, the hope that the grim, chill statistics of this municipal history will 
be softened by the radiance of valorous deeds that shed a glory about it, and that those who 
come after us will feel a certain contentment in the fact that the activities of Buffalo and 
Erie County, during the crucial days of the Great World War, have been pi'eserved in impar- 
tial data for the information of posterity. 

The Editor. 


BUFFALO, like every other American city, began in 1914 to write an epochal chapter in its his- 
tory, unconscious, of course, of the tremendous events impending. George D. Emerson 
and Frank H. Severance, who spun the web which carries us back to the earliest days of our 
community existence and who set out the historical monuments hereabout, tell us that prior to 
the outbreak of the Civil War, a facetious individual remarked that Buffalo had had three notable 
events in its history; namely, the destruction of the village by the British and Indians, December 
30, 1813; the hanging of the three Thayers in 1825, made famous by the late George Ferris, one- 
time editor of the Courier, and the big flood of 1844. Neither Mr. Emerson nor Mr. Severance 
concurs in the opinion that those events should be classified as notable, though conceding that 
they have "impressed themselves indelibly" upon the annals of the municipality. One of them, 
at least, the first named, is epochal. The Civil War established the second epoch, and in this 
year of 1919 we have just emerged from the third. 

Of course, for the purposes of this book and for the men and women of this day, it is not essen- 
tial that the memorable events of other eras be set down, but the men and women of to-morrow 
may have a desire and surely have a right to know what manner of municipality we had at the 
time the great World War involved and enveloped us. 

The Niagara Frontier as a maker of history prior to this date, Mr. Emerson says, is entitled 
to a much higher rank than is usually accorded to it by the average historian and a careful survey 
of the various sections of the city of Buffalo reveals many spots which are associated, some with 
national history, all with the history of this locality. Buffalo Ci'eek, or River, as it is known in 
these later years, had been Buffalo Creek from time immemorial, so long that the mind of man 
runneth not to the contrary; when, how or from whom or what it received the name, is buried 
in the forgotten legends of the past. The city, located along this creek or river, received its 
name, however, from the stream around which it has been built. 

In point of known events, South Buffalo is the oldest part of the present city. On Buffalo 
Creek, some three or four miles from its mouth, the first Seneca Indian villages were established 
during the Revolutionary War, refugees settling there in 1779-80, after Sullivan's raid had de- 
stroyed their old homes in the Genesee Valley. In earlier epochs the Eries had their home in 
this region, but, as a nation, they were wiped out of existence in the disastrous campaign with the 
Senecas in a bloody and decisive battle which took place near the head of Honeoye Lake. In 
the neighborhood of these villages was built a council house, in which councils of national im- 
portance were held and treaties of commensurate significance made. Associated with it are the 
names of Young King, Farmer's Brother, Red Jacket, and other Indian celebrities. In this 
vicinity was also the Seneca Mission church, built 1826, abandoned 1843, and gradually destroyed 
during succeeding years. Indian Church Road now runs through the churchyard and near the 
site of the building. In the old cemetery were the original graves of Red .Jacket and other chiefs, 
and of Mary Jamison. Their bones were long since removed to other resting places — Mary 
Jamison to "Glen Iris," the beautiful home of the Hon. William P. Letchworth, at Portage, in 
1874, the chiefs to Forest Lawn in 1884 and 1894. 

St. Paul's Episcopal Parish built the first Buffalo church, raising its structure at the corner of 
Church and Erie streets in 1819. In that church the congregation of St. Paul's worshiped until 
18.50 when the present stone edifice bounded by Pearl, Church and Erie streets was built. In 
1823 the First Presbyterian Society erected a church on the opposite corner — Niagara and Church; 
that church was rebuilt in 1827 and in 1891 the Society reared the now commanding edifice on 
The Circle. 

The present City Hall was opened for official purposes in 1876, being erected on a site formerly 
used as a cemeteiy. 


14 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

Out of small beginnings has come the City of Buffalo of to-day, a great municipality sur- 
rounded by highly developed smaller cities, as well as by villages and towns, all of which have 
taken an important part in the world-wide struggle for the preservation of democracy. 

In place of the muddy roads of earlier days Buffalo now has more than 600 miles of paved streets; 
instead of the two or three churches of 1820, it has 260 churches, representing the widest freedom 
of religious thought and belief. The city is located at an elevation of from 580 to 690 feet above 
the level of the sea. Seventeen different railroads, thirteen of them trunk lines, enter the city. 
It has seven interurban traction lines, and issues annually building permits of a value in excess 
of $10,000,000. It has 66 public schools; three colleges and the University of Buffalo. It has 
more than 40 parochial schools and several private schools, apart from the shorthand and business 
colleges. Its hotel accommodations are up-to-date and extensive, including 60 registered hotels. 
It has nineteen hospitals and six English daily newspapers. 

Further data covering the municipality and facts in its history are here set forth in statistical 
array : 

Lake front (miles) 3.7 

Realty transfers (yearly) ... 10.000 

Suburban villages 20 

River front (miles) . . 17.35 

Libraries (public) — 7 branches ... 3 

Libraries {distributing agencies) 166 

Postal branches , 76 

Letter Carriers 396 

Banks — 5 state, 2 national, 5 trust companies, 4 savings, and 11 branch banks 27 

Savings and loan associations 26 

Bank clearances (1917) $982,563,624 

Autos in use 30,000 

Articles manufactured in city (of all different lines) 56% 

Express companies . 5 

Power companies 2 

Auditoriums (municipal) 2 

Theaters (regular) 9 

Picture theaters 72 

Street car passengers carried 191,200,048 

Public school enrollment . 66,293 

Steamship companies 14 

Passenger boat lines . 4 

Dwellings in Buffalo 76,391 


First settled in 1795 

Incorporated as a village April 2, 1813 

Incorporated as a city April 20, 1832 

Area, square miles 42,161 

Population, 1910 census 423,715 

Population, State census, 1915 . 454,630 

Population, 1919, estimated . 500,000 

Registered voters, male and female 108,589 

Assessed valuation, fiscal year beginning .July 1, 1919, and ending .June 30, 1920 . , $560,099,750 

Tax rate, all purposes. 1919-1920 $26.88 

Bonded debt . . $38,435,919.26 

Miles of streets 636.858 

Miles of street railway 223.40 

Miles of water mains 610.32 

Miles of sewers 568.2383 

Miles of boulevard driveways 26.600 

Breakwater, feet " 33,600 

Parks 17 

Boulevards 10 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 


Acreage — parks and boulevards 1,300 

City playgrounds 17 

City baseball diamonds 22 

City football grounds 10 

City tennis courts 5g 

City skating ponds 21 

Police stations 15 

Regular police 800 

Fire stations 56 

Fire companies 56 

Firemen 915 

City employees, including laborers 7,865 

Average daily water consumption, gallons per capita 339 

Gas lights 9,288 

Arc lights 5,459 

Gasoline lights 270 

Miles of paved streets 424 

Buffalo is the terminus of the State Barge Canal. 

10,000 vessel clearances annually. 

300,000,000 bushels of grain handled annually. 

More than 2,000,000 tons of pig iron produced annually. 

Mills produce 25,000 barrels of flour daily. 

2,500 manufacturing plants. 

22 grain elevators, with total capacity of 28,250,000 bushels. 

4 public markets. 

Between November, 1914, and January, 1919, the wage earnings increased 70%. 


Fortielh District 
S. Wallace Dempsey, 1914-1919 

Forty-first District 
Charles B. Smith, 1914-1919 

Forty-second District 
Daniel A. Driscoll, 1914-1917 William F. Waldow, 1917-1919 


William F. Kasting, 1914 to June, 1916 George J. Meyer, June, 1916 to 1919 

George Bleistein, 1914-1918 George Davidson, July, 1918-1919 

Vincent J. Riordan, 1914-1919 

Stephen V. Lockwood, 1914-1919 

Henry L. Fassett, 1914-1915 John D. Lynn, Nov., 1915-1919 

John T. Ryan, 1914-1919 




John P. Sullivan, President, 1914 

George J. Burley, President, 1915 

D. J. Sweeney, City Clerk 

1st Ward- 

-JoHN P. Sullivan 

15th Ward 

2d Ward- 

-Michael J. Healy 

16th Ward 

3d Ward- 

-Edward P. Costello 

17th Ward 

4th Ward- 

-Arthur J. Shea 

18th Ward 

5th Ward- 

-Timothy P. Coughlin 

19th Ward 

6th Ward- 

-Edward Stengel, Joseph Suttner 

20th Ward 

7th Ward- 

-Edward J. Endres 

21st Ward 

8th Ward- 

-Edward Sperry 

22d Ward- 

9th Ward- 

-Anthony J. Walkowiak 

23d Ward- 

10th Ward- 

-Frank Roskwitalski 

24th Ward 

11th Ward- 

-Peter Mildenberger 

25th Ward 

12th Ward- 

-George J. Burley 

26th Ward 

13th Ward- 

-Otto L. Geyer 

27th Ward- 

14th Ward- 

-John Fries 

-George Kohl 
-Frank T. Dance 
-Joseph H. Houck 
-Conrad J. Meyer 
-Arnold T. Armbrust 
-Frederick H. Holtz 
-William G. Humphrey 
-John Purcell 
-George G. Davidson, Jr. 
-Jospeh p. Broderick 
-George J. Haffa 
-Thomas H. McDonough 
-Edward P. Kelly 

Boleslaw Dorasewicz, President 
William J. Coad William E. Glass 

Francis T. Coppins Allan I. Holloway 

Boleslaw Dorasewicz Theofil Kaitanowski 

Horace C. Mills 
William J. Warwick 
William O. Weimar 

January 1, 1916, the Commission form of Government was inaugurated 


Louis P. Fuhrmann, Mayor, 1916-1917 

George S. Buck, Mayor, 1918-1919 

Charles M. Heald, 1916-1919 Arthur W. Kreinheder, 1916-1919 

Charles B. Hill, 1916-1917 John F. Malone, 1916-1919 

Frederick G. Bagley, 1918-1919 
D. J. Sweeney, Secretary 

Francis E. Fronczak 


Simon Seibert Edward C. Burgard William Person 

Bernard J. McConnell, Chief, 1914 to October 10, 1918 

Edward P. Murphy, Chief. October 10, 1918, to 1919 


Fred F. Klinck James B. Wall 

Michael Regan, Chief, 1914-1915 Henry J. Girvin, Chief, 1918 to May 1, 1919 

John Martin, Chief. 1916-1917 James W. Higgins, Chief, 1919 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 17 


John F. Cochrane, 1914-1917 

Charles B. Hill, 1916-1917 Charles M. Heald, 1918-1919 


John Reimann, 1914-1915 Isaac N. Stewart, 1916-1919 


John T. Mahoney, 1914-1917 John C. Betz 

William J. Burke Charles J. Reuling, 1918-1919 

Joseph M. Gleason 

Francis G. Ward, 1914-1915 Arthur W. Kreinheder, 1916-1919 

George H. Norton 

Henry L. Lyon, 1914-1915 Thomas W. Kennedy, 1916 

George C. Andrews, 1917-1919 

Thomas W. Kennedy, 1914-1915 William F. Schwartz, 1916-1919 

Henry P. Emerson, 1914-1918 Ernest C. Hartwell, 1918-1919 

Louis J. Kenngott 

Frank T. Reynolds 


William P. Brennan, Chief Judge 

George L. Hager Peter Maul 

Albert A. Hartzell Thomas H. Noonan 

Patrick J. Keeler Clifford McLaughlin, 1918-1919 

Frank W. Standart, 1918-1919 

George E. Judge, Judge 

18 Buffalo's Part in the World War 


Frank A. Dorn, Chairman 
^.j^jjj) Alonzo G. Hinkley, Clerk 

I^JAMES W. FiTZHENRY, 1914, 1915 1916, 1917; Thomas G. Lawley, 1918, 1919. 

2— John C. O'Leary, 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 

3— Thomas W. Scully, 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 

4— Edward J. Kappler, 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917; Albert Fox, 1918, 1919. 

5— John T. McBride, 1914, 1915, 1918, 1919; Robert Mulroy, 1916, 1917. 

6— Edward Flore, 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 

7— Samuel Frank, 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 

8— Frederick W. Theobold, 1914. 1915; William Pfeiffer, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 

9— Patrick J. Hunt, 1914, 1915; Jacob Henseler, 1916, 1917; Louis D. Herko, 1918, 1919. 
10— Michael Tobolski, 1914, 1915. 1916, 1917; Anthony Dropik, 1918, 1919. 

11— James M. Mead, 1914; Edward Moylan, 1915; Oliver Hamister, 1916, 1917; Dennis J. Dee, 1918, 1919. 
12— William A. Stambach, 1914, 1915; Charles M. Bogold, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 
13— Andrew Sprenger, 1914, 1915; Ernst F. Martinke, 1916, 1917; Edwin F. Jaeckle, 1918, 1919. 
14— William Kumpf, 1914, 1915; George L. Schupp, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 
15— Max Kuczkowski, 1914, 1915; John H. Dietrich, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 
16— B. Michalski, 1914, 1915; Joseph W. Becker, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 
17— William J. Beier, .Jr., 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 
18— Edward C. Franklin, 1914, 1915; Frank A. Dorn, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 
19— Charles E. Arber, 1914, 1915; Charles J. Koch, 1916, 1917; George Wild, 1918, 1919. 
20— John C. Sturm, 1914. 1915, 1916, 1917; Thomas E. Lawrence, 1918, 1919. 
21— George Klein, 1914, 1915; William Fink, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 

22— Charles B. Reinhardt, 1914, 1915; Fred A. Bradley, 1916, 1917; William F. Langley, 1918, 1919. 
23— Harvey D. Blakeslee, Jr., 1914, 1915; Hervey J. Drake, 1916, 1917; Robert C. Palmer, 1918, 1919. 
24— William B. Lawless, 1914, 1915; Joseph P. Broderick. 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 
25— Carlton E. Ladd, 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 

26— Thomas H. McElvein, 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917; Thomas H. McDonough, 1918, 1919. 
27— John Lunghino, 1914, 1915; Bartholomew Oddo, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 

Alden Otto H. Wende, 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 

Amherst Lee W. Britting, 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 

Aurora Asher B. Emery, 1914, 1915; Richard S. Persons, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 

Boston Philip D. Weber, 1914, 1915; Howell Drake, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 

Brant WILLIAM F. Avey, 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 

Cheektowaga . . . Frank Wildy, 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917; William C. Heeb, 1918, 1919. 

Clarence Theodore Krehbiel, 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 

Golden William F. Frantz, 1914, 1915, 1916. 1917, 1918, 1919. 

Collins Frank H. Briggs, 1914, 1915. 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 

Concord George E. Stedman, 1914, 1915; Glenn N. Oyer, 1916, 1917; Alton C. Bates, Ira H. 

Vail, 1918, 1919. 
East Hamburg . . Frank F. Holmwood, 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 

Eden Edgar M. Bunting, 1914, 1915; Charles H. Ide, 1916, 1917; Henry A. Bley, 1918, 


Elma Ernest M. Hill, 1914, 1915; Benjamin J. Eldridge, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 

Evans Marve Harwood, 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917; Julius M. Schwert, 1918, 1919. 

Grand Island . . . Adam Kaiser, 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917; Henry W. Long, 1918, 1919. 

Hamburg William Kronenberg, 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917; George B. Abbott, 1918, 1919. 

Holland Henry Bangert, 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917; O. R. Whitney, 1918, 1919. 

Lackawanna City . Thomas Delaney, 1914; Michael J. Mescall, 1915, 1916, 1917; Martin T. Ryan, 1918, 

Lancaster John L. Staeber, 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 

Marilla Jesse G. B.artoo, 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 

Newstead Frank M. Stage, 1914, 1915; George A. Funke, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 

North Collins . . ^ Joseph Thiel, 1914, 1915; Howard W. Butler, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 

Sardinia Robert R. Olin, 1914, 1915; J. Gilbert Allen, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 

Tonawanda .... Robert A. Toms, 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917; Arthur R. Atkinson, 1918, 1919. 
Tonawanda City . . John K. Patton, 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917; William Stryker, 1918, 1919. 

Wales Fred Kratt, 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 

West Seneca ... Christian L. Schudt, 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 19 



Frederick G. Becker, 1914 Edward Stengel, 1915-1917 

Frederick A. Bradley, 1918-1919 

Philip A. Laing, 1914 to May, 1919 George B. Burd, 1919 

Wesley C. Dudley, 1914-1917 Guy B. Moore, 1918-1919 

Louis B. Hart 

Franklin E. Bard, 1914-1918 Severn A. Anderson, 1919 

Simon A. Nash, 1914-1915 John H. Meahl, 1916-1919 

George S. Buck, 1914-1917 Frederick C. Gaise, 1918-1919 


William Hunt 


Forly-cl(j}dh Dhtrict 
John F. Malone, 1914 ' Clinton T. Horton, 1915-1917 

Ross Graves, 1917-1919 

Forty-ninth District 
Samuel J. Ramsperger, 1914-1919 

Fiftieth District 
Gottfried H. Wende, 1914 William P. Greiner, 1915-1917 

Leonard W. Gibbs, 1917-1919 


First District 
William H. Warhus, 1914 Allen Keeney, 1915 

Alexander Taylor, 1916-1918 

Second District 
Clinton T. Horton, 1914 Ross Graves, 1915-1916 

John W. Slacer, 1917-1918 

Third District 
Albert F. Geyer, 1914 Nicholas J. Miller, 1915-1918 

Fourth District 
Patrick W. Quigley, 1914 James M. Mead, 1915-1918 

Fifth District 
Richard F. Hearn, 1914 Arthur G. McElroy, 1915 

John A. Lynch, 1916-1917 A. A. Patrzkowski, 1918 

Sixth District 
Leo F. Tucholka, 1914 Peter C. Jezewski, 1915-1916 

A. A. Patrzykowski, 1917 George H. Rowe, 1918 

Seventh District 
William P. Greiner, 1914 John F. Heim, 1915 

Joseph Roemhild, Jr., 1916 Earl G. Danser, 1917 

H. a. Zimmerman, 1918 

Eiglilh District 
Wallace Thayer, 1914 Leonard W. Gibbs, 1915-1916 

H. a. Zimmerman, 1917 Nelson W. Cheney, 1918 

Ninth District 
Frank B. Thorn, 1915 Nelson W. Cheney, 1916-1917 

20 Buffalo's Part in the World War 


ON August 2, 1914, Kaiser Wilhelm II, Emperor of Germany, set his military machine 
against Belgium in a quest for world domination. His recognized aim was to advance the 
HohenzoUern dynasty, to secure a place in the sun, to establish and entrench "Deutsch- 
land Ueber Alles " at any brutal cost. Buffalonians at that time were enjoying the rare advan- 
tages which the lake and river recreation spots hereabout afforded in the heated days of 
midsummer. The Buffalo newspapers of that particular morning held no story of greater local 
importance than a recital of the activities and pleasures of the throngs in the parks and at the 
beach resorts. 

Political sensations which had seeped from a collapsed water works pumping station and clung 
around sundry aldermanic delinquencies were the discordant notes of the moment. They shared 
the company of a rampant reappearance of a periodical investigation which beset the Depart- 
ment of Public Works. These formed the basis for a charter reform campaign which held public 
interest just at that time over all the other questions of immediate local concern. The public 
mind was wholly free of matters of grave import. The cost of living was not high. Employ- 
ment was plentiful. Industry was thriving. Buffalo had grown rapidly in population and com- 
merce, and the people were contented and prosperous. 

The story of war in Europe which came over the cable that day appealed to the people in no 
heavier vein than might a story detailing the movements of a set of manikins or fabled brownies. 
War was something the world seemed to have passed by forever. Disturbances could come? 
Yes! But it was difficult to realize that great nations like those of Germany and France and 
Russia and Great Britain would engage in a killing conflict. The violent death of Austria's 
Archduke, Serbia's invasion, and the other royal rumblings which announced the advance of 
Germany's terrible military machine, awakened no tragic interest among the people here; in 
fact, so substantially imbedded was the idea of war's impossibility, that for days and weeks 
many thousands of Buffalonians continued in the belief that Germany's purpose and Belgium's 
plight were not real. 

Through the last days of August, through September and October, Buffalo's interest centered 
to a far greater degree — oh, to an immensely greater degree! — in the progress of the campaign 
for the adoption of a commission form of government than in the European war. Gradually, 
however, we were coming to realize that the war was real. But it was far removed from us. 
Some old families of German origin received word of relatives engaged in the conflict. That 
fact aroused their interest in the progress of the campaign. Buffalo, having a substantial Cana- 
dian population, found another proportional source of interest in the announcement that the 
British Government would need Canadian troops. England called early for her continental 
forces, and, as weeks went by the activity across the Niagara River drew our attention to the 
spread of the tremendous struggle, but no thought of American participation at any time entered 
the public mind. We went serenely and quietly along our several and respective occupational 
ways. Our concern in the war was not deep-rooted. Buffalo was engaged in its pursuits of 
peace, and easily anticipated that the sober and sanei- minds of Europe would presently and sud- 
denly end it all satisfactorily. That thought left undisturbed those who had given any serious 
attention to the matter. Others were not interested. The closing months of 1914 found no 
great war concern prevalent in the city, and interest was less in other localities throughout the 
United States about in proportion to the distance one travelled away from the Canadian border. 

In the minds of Buffalo men and women, through all the years of the Republic, there had been 
implanted the story of only one lighteous war — the victorious struggle of America for liberty 
and independence. They knew that as a result of that war the United States had determined to 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 21 

remain free from all foreign entanglements, and to insure our non-activity in Old World conflicts 
our forefathers had established a policy long known as the Monroe Doctrine. We warned Eu- 
rope not to interfere in our affairs; and, for our part, pledged the United States to abstain from 
interference in Europe. History, on numerous occasions, vindicated the wisdom of that course. 
The Monroe Doctrine became one of the institutions of America, and, although since the days 
of its adoption we had advanced rapidly among the nations of the world, and although the modern 
means of communications, the mails, the wireless, the ocean greyhounds, and the increase of our 
trade and travel had brought us close to Europe and made our isolation, perhaps, more imagi- 
nary than real, still at the outbreak of this struggle there was no sentiment for a change in the 
policy which had for so long given us peace. In the American mind it was an irrefutable mandate. 

This brief, though perhaps, unnecessary, explanation of a mental picture which hung in the 
gallery of every American mind may be founrl useful to Buffalonians in after years as they study 
the men and women and activities of this period. It may explain to them why the outbreak of 
the war caught everybody here by surprise. Europe, steeped in wrangles, could readily, perhaps, 
contemplate such a vicious onslaught on the ideals of civilization, but here the war was incom- 
prehensible. A war among civilized nations? Impossible! It is somewhat difficult to write 
into this narrative an explanation which will adequately convey to those who are to come after 
us how utterly impregnable were the American minds in 1914 to the booming of those first guns 
on the battlefields of France or the rumble of the trucks through Belgium and Luxemburg. We 
were simply shock-proof against war. The slaying of the Austrian Aix-hduke, Francis Ferdinand, 
at Sarajevo on June 28th held no gi-eater portent to most of our minds than the jumping of a king 
on the checker board by rival players in a neighboring firehouse. And yet in the echo and con- 
fusion of that assassination were the hoofbeats which told in terrifying terms to all of Belgium, 
France and England of the coming of the Prussian War Machine. 

Early in August, Potsdam declared war. Several days before — on .July 28th— had begun 
its— let us call it its predetermined assault on Serbia. The German invasion of Belgium started 
like the rush of a mad bull and was consummated with Hunnish cruelty. As the Kaiser's army 
trampled over the courageous forces of that small nation and swarmed on down into France 
interest suddenly became aroused and it may be said to have become general in the United States 
by September 6th, the date on which the advance of Von Kluck towards Paris was stopped by 
the French under Joffre near the Marne River. The concern of Buffalonians, however, was the 
concern of disintei-ested onlookers. The announcement by an umpire giving the names of the 
rival batteries for the day's baseball game at the Ferry Street ball pai-k occasioned about the 
same relative interest as the telegraph despatches outlining the progress of the contending forces 
on the French and Belgian battlefields. Each side was championed here by those among us of 
foreign birth according to the location of their nativity, but the masses of Buffalo, at that early 
day, saw no issue involved which affected our individual life or our national policy. "Let them 
fight it out," was a common ejaculation among those who stopped to discuss the question. There 
was no direct assault on our rights. No i-eason why we should become entangled; as a matter 
of fact, had a modern and local Diogenes gone out with his lantern to find the plain spoken man 
among us he might have returned with the imijression that only oui- sporting blood had been 
aroused. The lackadaisical folk awoke. That seemed to be all. Among city officials, at the 
clubs, in the hotel foyers, everywhere the same indifference over the war's progress. Only where 
one had a relative involved among the contending forces was there serious battle thought. To 
most of us it was a purely European dispute. It never entered into the discussions, not even 
into our thoughts, that we had need take sides in such a conflict. It detracted nothing from 
our amusements. It curbed none of our wastes. We were prospei-ous, generally speaking, for 
wages were good. It was the natural thing for us to go unshod of all vital concern in the troubles 
of France, or Germany or England. We did sympathize with Belgium. The little buffer coun- 
try had our good will from the start, just as the little fellow carries the heart of the onlooker in 
every conflict with a "bully." But in the main enterprise we took no side. 

22 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

The Monroe Doctrine towered out before us second only to the doctrine cut in stone on Mount 
Sinai. Accordingly, President Wilson's early proclamation of neutrality was received by the 
people as a natural and inevitable course. He put into words the sentiment of the people as 
accurately as that sentiment will ever be conveyed from the hearts to the minds of men. **Every 
man who really loves America/' his message ran, "will act and speak in the true spirit of neu- 
trality, which is the spirit of impartiality and fairness and friendliness to all concerned." That 
spirit had already found a lodging place here and the President's appeal met no counter currents. 
We, surely, at that moment and in that period were solidly neutral. 

It will be no easy thing for a student in the coming years, as he goes over the events of these 
days, to disassociate from the history of local affairs of this period all thoughts of war and the 
tremendous crushing out of life as the fighting machines of Europe clawed back and forth over 
the battlefields of France and Belgium. It is difficult for even a contemporaneous writer to 
clear his mind of the rumblings from across the ocean as he endeavors to set down aright the 
record of that day at home. But the masses were able to do it. Their minds functioned in more 
contented fields. Home, family, office— at work, in recreation, or at rest no trouble was astir. 

The commission charter contest* came in November with its climacteric fierceness. The rival 
forces stormed from automobiles on the street corners, and before the swarming, overalled throng 

*On January 1, 1916, the first Council of the City of Buffalo, created under the new commission form of government, came into existence. The 
scene of the inauguration was the old Council Chamber on the third floor of the City and County Hall. The chamber that day looked the part 
of a display room of a metropolitan florist, or the main gallery at the annual flower show. Nothing like it had ever before come to pass, and the 
well wishes on which the new government floated into power were perfumed with the fairest fragrance of the rose. The old government stepped 
out. Let it be said the retiring officials did it gracefully. They took their place in the throng that sang the praises of the new government, and 
joined in the welcome extended to the incoming representatives. How much heart they had in the task is not of much moment. They stood 
the ordeal, and gave a smile and Godspeed to their successors. 

This new government had its beginning, though not its origin, with the war. Some months prior to the outbreak of hostilities in Europe, 
Senator John F. Malone fought a battle for its adoption in the Senate Chamber at Albany. The campaign for its acceptance by the people of 
Buffalo was at the height of the drive when the armies of the younger Moltke crossed the Belgium line in the first German offensive. The commis- 
sion government campaign involved the overthrow of a form of city administration which had existed for more than a quarter of a century and 
through which had become entrenched several exceptionally able men, listed among the most powerful political figures in the local public affairs 
of their day. They were the controlling factors in the government; and, in its most exciting phase, the drive for the new Charter was a drive for 
the destruction of the political power and position of those men. Two of the leaders — John P. Sullivan and Col. Francis G. Ward — fell with the 
success of the new government, the latter, a very sick man throughout the final stages of the campaign, died within a week after the election 
which had recorded his defeat. The third member of that triumvirate was Mayor Louis P. Fuhrmann Under the terms of the new charter he 
continued in office to the end of the term for which he had been elected — January 1st, 1918- He was a candidate for re-election in November of 
1917, but was defeated by George S. Buck by a plurality of 10,000. 

Many students of municipal government, of whom George B. Burd, William Burnett Wright, Frank M. Loomis, A. J. Elias, Knowlton 
Mixer, Oliver G. LaReau, Lewis Stockton and Charles J. Staples might be mentioned as leaders, had for many years in public forums of one kind 
or another advocated the consideration of this simplified form of municipal management. They urged it in season and out. Mr. Stockton suc- 
ceeded on one or two occasions in having it submitted to a popular vote, but the public interest was not sufficiently aroused to make the showing 
an impressive one. The small body of campaigners, following each such disastrous occasion, returned undaunted to their academic discussion 
of the subject. Their motto was "Carry On." 

The Buffalo Board of Aldermen continued to create antagonisms as boards of aldermen and other legislative bodies frequently do. Mayor 
Fuhrmann ran afoul of the aims of the political organization of his party, and lost the support of William H. Fitzpatrick, chairman of the Demo- 
cratic County Committee. Fred Greiner, a very keen and forceful political leader, then at the head of the Republican organization, was not con- 
cerned with the political destinies either of Mayor Fuhrmann, nor those in control of the legislative branch of the city government. Consequently 
he had no heart for a fight against the reform movement. With an attitude of indifference or secret hostility existing in the two great parties 
towards the existing government and its controlling heads, the reform element pressed on. At that period William J. Conners, owner of the Buffalo 
Courier and Buffal > Enquirer, two influential newspapers, opened a vigorous campaign for the adoption of the new form of government, and senti- 
ment was sufficiently aroused to force its enactment over the opposition of the city officials. Senator Malone at Albany guided the measure through 
the devious and precarious channels of legislation. 

The State Constitution requiring the signature of the Mayor of the city to all special legislation, the new charter suddenly encountered another 
hurdle and was obliged, in the course of its legislative progress, to come to Mayor Fuhrmann for his consideration and approval. The Mayor 
expressed no opinion as to his probable course. The law as passed carried a provision that it should not be effective unless approved by a majority 
of the people on a referendum vote, and, apart from the real merits of the measure itself, came the question of whether or not the people should 
be permitted to sav if thev wanted this new form of government. The speakers in support of the measure at the hearing before the Mayor in- 
cluded George H." Kennedy, W. H. Crosby. Charles J. Staples, George B. Burd, Mrs. Frank J. Shuler. Charles M. Heald. William B. Wright, 
Peter B. Smokowski, G. Barrett Rich, Max Nowak, Carlos C. Alden, Mrs. Frank Bliss, W. A. Eckert, Charles Rohlfs. Alderman Fred H. Holtz, 
Irving S. Underhill. Melvin P. Porter, Francis F. Baker. Roland Crangle, Chauncey J. Hamlin, A. J. Elias, L. W. Simpson, C. T. Horton, George 
G. Davidson, John Purcell, C. B. Matthews, E. H. Buddenhagen, Mrs. Melvin P. Porter, Gus Wende, Frank H. Callan, Knowlton Mixer, Oliver 
G. LaReau, and Dr. F. Park Lewis. There may have been others on the occasion of the hearing. The Mayor's reception room was packed to 
the doors and the corridors of the City Hall were thronged with an eager, earnest crowd; denied admission by reason of physical impossibility of 
getting more people into the small space which the Mayor's office afforded, they crowded into the Council Chamber and there held an indignation 
meeting demanding that the hearing be stopped until a larger room was made available for those unable to reach the Mayor's office. The imper- 
turbable Mayor again and again declined to listen to these appeals. He stood like adamant, insisting that the hearing was scheduled for the 
Mayor's office; that it would be held there, and that everyone who wanted to speak either for or against the measure would be heard if it took a 
week to hear them all. Those who spoke against the acceptance of the measure included: Simon Fleischmann, Arthur W. Hickman, Thomas C. 
Burke. W. H. Tennant. D. J. Sweeney, Charles L. Feldman, Miss Mary L. O'Connor. President of the School Teachers' League, President Joseph 
Lynch of the Erie Club ithe policemen's organization), Dr. Pettit, William Schoenhut, Louis E. Desbecker, Frank S. Burzynski, John Coleman, 
delegate of the United Trades and Labor Council, President Edward Boore of the Dauntless Club (the firemen's organization), John F. Cochrane, 
City Comptroller. Henry W. Killeen, Vito Christiano, James Smith, John J. Griffin, and possibly others. 

The hearing lasted two full days. At times acrimonious and bitter it concluded in harmony. Touching every fibre in the whole list of human 
emotions it ended in an exchange of courtesies. The Mayor vetoed the measure, as might reasonably have been anticipated and expected. Some 
part of its support was aiming at his oflicial life. After the veto the measure was returned to the Legislature at Albany where Senator Malone, 
with the aid of his powerful friends in that body and at home, succeeded in passing it over the veto of the Mayor ~a very exceptional and remark- 
able achievement. It was then opposed before Governor Glynn, but received the approval of the State's Chief Executive and came to a vote 
of the people in November of that year. It carried by a vote of 36,327 in favor; 21,011 against. The following year 46 candidates^presented 
themselves for nomination as commissioners to the four places to be filled. The successful candidates were Arthur W. Kreinheder, Charles M. 
Heald, Charles B. Hill and John F. Malone, and together with Mayor Fuhrmann they administered the affairs of the city during the earlier period 
of the war. At the beginning of 1918, Mayor Buck succeeded Mayor Fuhrmann as a result of the preceding election and Frederick G. Bagley, 
who served as chairman of the commission government association during the campaign before the people for ratification of the charter, succeeded 
Charles B. Hill upon the latter's appointment as chairman of the State Public Service Commission. 

The new Council came into the government at an eventful period in the city's history, and their work will necessarily be for all time a. matter 
of concern and interest to those of later years, particularly those into whose keeping the destinies of the city are entrusted. — Editor 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 


In Pre- War Days 

Members of the old Both Regiment in training — About to break camp 

that poured out of the factories. They exhibited their argumentative wares wherever a public 
forum would afford the opportunity. 

5 Election Day — and the new government had won an overwhelming victory. A good day's 
work — then the citizens rested. Reformers, statesmen and politicians drew each respective 
belt one eye-hole tighter. The scent of newer game was in the air. And so the time went by 
from the winter of 1914-1915 to the Spring and Summer and Fall of 1915. Candidates multi- 
plied for the new municipal posts like the leaves on the trees. Public interest was focused on 
these new developments of personal ambitions and zeal for public service. A few contracts 
from the Allied governments coming into the factories of Buffalo increased the demand for labor. 
This widening industrial field of opportunity again enhanced the prosperity of the people. War 
contracts were added to our list of productive occupations. The salaries of ordinary mechanics 
rapidly advanced, and we began to feel — but only in a pecuniarily profitable way — the effects 
of the war. The Mayor's message of 1915 contained no mention of the war nor its local effects. 
His communication to the new Council in 1916 was likewise barren of war references. Though 
the presence of the European struggle was felt in the industries and reviewed in the newspapers, 
in the minds of the masses of the people it had drawn no nearer to us at the beginning of 1916 
than it had been in the closing days of '14. We heard of the use of poison gas and of liquid flame. 
Stories of Vimy Ridge floated across the border. The Canadian casualty lists contained the 
names of boys from Toronto, Bridgeburg, Fort Erie, Port Colborne and other nearby Canadian 
points. The spread of the submaiine warfare incited local interest and the presence of the 
"Deustchland," the underseas merchant ship from Germany, attracted our attention and elicited 
expressions of admiration, but all these were happenings in a field from which we seemed wholly 
and everlastingly eliminated. 

24 Buffalo's Part in the World War 


THE first thought of a newer condition in our affairs might be traced to a speech delivered by 
President Wilson before the League to Enforce Peace on May 27th, 1916. In that speech 
for the first time in the history of the Republic, a President of the United States had indi- 
cated that this Nation would have to give up its position of isolation behind the Monroe Doctrine 
and assume the responsibilities of a world power. The League to Enforce Peace was organized 
in Philadelphia, Jime 17th, 1915. It proposed as a fundamental plank of its origin that a League 
of Nations be created at the end of the war for the purpose of setting up "a Judicial Tribunal 
and a Council of Conciliation," and of using jointly economic and military force against any 
nation belonging to the League that should go to war without first placing the questions involved 
befoi-e the court or council of conciliation. It also proposed that conferences should be held 
from time to time for the purpose of formulating and codifying rules of international law. Wil- 
liam H. Taft was chosen as the first president of the League, and Alton B. Parker, a former chief 
judge of the Court of Appeals of the State of New York, and a former candidate for President 
of the United States, was chosen vice-president. President Wilson's first speech touching on the 
newer foreign policy had such a forum for its dissemination. It is readily conceivable that the 
speech delivered by the President in May, 1916, would have aroused, one year earlier, a storm of 
bitter protest and of wide pohtical portent. By that time, however, we had had many diplo- 
matic exchanges with both England and Germany. The former Nation could not agree entirely 
with the policy that we sought for the control of the seas. The authorities at Washington had 
foreseen that complications on the seas might draw us into the conflict. As early as August, 
1914, Secretary of State Bryan had despatched a note to all the powers then at war pointing 
out rather clearly, it seemed, that serious trouble might arise out of the uncertainty of neutrals 
as to their maritime rights and suggesting that the Declaration of London be accepted by all 
nations for the period of the war. The reply of Great Britain was not entirely satisfactory, for 
she could not accept in full any program which treated the questions of the sea apart, and 
entirely so, from questions governing the powers on land. England's strength was in her Navy. 
To bind her naval operations, without binding the land movements of other powers jointly 
therewith, did not appeal to her. Probably it was illogical to expect more from England than 
England then offered, but the American people, or a substantial portion thereof, were disap- 
pointed in the reply. It did not tend to clarify the situation, nor did it carry any assurance that 
neutral nations in the enforcement of their maritime rights would be able to steer clear of friction. 
Our neutrality was real, but it was not easy to maintain, and Secretary of State William J. 
Biyan soon found his relations with the Administration strained; his retirement from the Cab- 
inet a natural course, and, from his point of view, inevitable. Controversies between this Nation 
and Great Britain soon arose. These, while disturbing, did not seriously threaten our neutrality, 
for the questions at issue concerned propei-ty rights and were fully covered, as the country under- 
stood, by existing treaties between this country and Great Britain. Whatever impression this 
attitude of England may have had upon the government of the United States, the trend of thought 
it created among the people was not what might reasonably and naturally have been expected. 
Instead of turning the public mind and the public hands to matters of preparation, it simply 
aroused a sentiment something akin to indifference over England's fate. Nor did the German 
propagandists, ah'eady busily burrowing in their rabbit-like way, overlook the opportunity it 
afforded to shake loose the none too tightly-bound ties between the two great nations of English 
speaking people. Simultaneously with these occurrences Germany stirred up among its popu- 
lation a resentment against the people of the United States — or, rather, the government of the 
United States. Germany endeavored to foi-ce a discontinuance of our trade in munitions with 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 25 

belligerent nations by an appeal on humanitarian grounds. Coming from a nation whose atro- 
cities in Belgium and on the high seas were already beginning to cry for vengeance, it attracted 
no great measure of serious attention either at Washington or among the people throughout the 
several States of the Union. The correspondence of the Pi-esident with London and Berlin on 
these and other questions had earned for him the title of "Our Letter-wi'iting President." 

When President Wilson addressed the League to Enforce Peace he had determined to strike 
a new and significant note in our foreign policy. The day of our national aloofness was about 
to pass, though the masses of America did not fully realize it even after the President had spoken. 
He pictured in his address that day the principles on which lasting peace must rest, and reached 
1 conclusion, not drawn but forced, that the time had arrived for us to assume a new position 
among the nations of the world. He said : 

"So sincerely do we believe these things that I am sure that I speak the mind and wish of the 
people of America when I say that the United States is willing to become a partner in any feasible 
association of nations formed in order to realize these objects (lasting peace) and make them 
secure against violation." 

The sinking of the Lusitania, with its precious cargo of men, women and children, perpetrated 
by U-boats on May 7th, 1915, the terrible affliction and suffering occasioned by the use of poison 
2;as on the field of battle had laid the foundation wherein the President's clearly stated intention 
Df departing from the tenets and restrictions of the Monroe doctrine brought no criticism; in 
'act, won commendation from the people. 

Our chief grievances against Germany grew out of the vicious use made of her underseas boats, 
:he wanton murder of innocent women and children and of peaceful men — noncombatants — 
Taveling along the public highway of the ocean; the presence in this country of German spies, 
Df paid agents to disturb the peace and destroy the property of American citizens. Those and 
she constant quibbles and misrepresentation created an atmosphere of uneasiness. A smoulder- 
ng volcano of hostility to the policy and purposes of the Imperial German Government was here, 
:hough not entirely discernible to the naked eye. And yet the thought of taking an active part 
n the European war was very, very far from most of our minds. The belief was general that 
Germany would back down before she would risk an open rupture with the United States, but 
t is apparent that this belief was not entertained at Washington ; in fact, all evidence is to the 

In a speech at St. Louis, Mo., in February of 1916 the President said: "The danger is not 
Tom within, gentlemen, it is from without, and I am bound to tell you that that danger is con- 
stant and immediate, not because anything new has happened, not because there has been any 
change in our international relationships with recent weeks or months, but because the danger 
;omes with every turn of events." 

The President was speaking from an active and close association with the intricacies of our 
•elations with the belligerent nations and the difficulties he was expei'iencing in maintaining, in 
;he face of these, a strict neutrality. The public was far away from that standpoint. The reader 
jf history is concerned only with the book before him and the incidents it unfolds, while the man 
)n the street in the history-making period is concerned intimately only with the things which 
surround his daily life; and with no feature of this war, save the headlines in the newspapers, 
lad the man on the street as yet come in contact. Eai'ly in Octobei-, 1916, the U-boats made a 
'aid on English shipping oft" Nantucket. For a moment there was surprise and concern. Could 
Germany strike America from her submarines? Germany had already curtailed her underseas 
activity at the request of this government, and that was taken as an evidence of her good faith ; 
;hough here again we were fooled. The U-boats' visit was soon dismissed, and the spirit of in- 
lifference returned. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 27 


DURING the Fall of 1915 some of the leading men of the nation somewhat incensed by the 
spread of German propaganda, and outraged by the depredations of the German submarine 
commanders (we still partially, at least, absolved the German Government from the crime 
of murdering those helpless women and children and attributed it to unrestrained Huns in charge 
of the boats) began a movement looking to national preparedness. It was at first simply a 
publicity enterprise to attract public attention to our deficiencies in the event of war. They 
called it a hobby of the idle rich. Let it be that; but, nevertheless, it had a foundation in 
the earth's illumination as the European conflagration shot its flames across the heavens. 
Students of human nature and of history could not help but see the blazing sky. And it was 
red ! 

A meeting called by Joseph Choate, former American Ambassador to the Court of St. James, 
distinguished citizen and accomplished statesman, was held at the Bankers' Club in the City of 
New York on November 3d, 1915. Every American city was invited to participate in that 
gathering, and, while the meeting held many of the most representative men of the Nation, the 
unrepresented cities would have made a much longer list than those whose repre.sentatives were 
present. Buft'alo appeared at that confei-ence through its Mayor, Louis P. Fuhrmann, and 
Evan P. Hollister — the latter a member of the law firm of Rogers, Locke & Babcock — a very 
early and earnest worker for preparedness and one who eventually saw sei'vice with the American 
Expeditionary Forces in France. The meeting sounded keenly the call for American activity 
in preparation for home defense in the event the European struggle should ever sweep across the 
ocean. We are not sure that those concerned in these preparedness plans wei'e grave or appre- 
hensive in their work. However, they were earnest. None went around with whitened face, but 
as sound thinkers and farsighted men they saw — behind the good-natured, happy, well-paid 
forces of the Nation — a dark background. It was not discernible to most of us. It must have 
been to those men, for their activities were of a nature to spread bi'oadly the preparedness prop- 

Mayor Fuhrmann spoke for Buffalo at the meeting, and in his address set forth briefly and 
concisely our general attitude : 

Mr. Toastmaster and Honored Guests: 

I want to thank Mr. Choate and the gentlemen in charge of this gathering for their courtesy shown me in asking 
me to participate with them and all of us in this initial meeting in the Empire State in behalf of national preparedness. 

Buffalo, the city of which I have the honor to be the official head for the time being, is solidly in favor of the great 
enterprise which inspires our coming together this afternoon. 

Notwithstanding that Buffalo is on the Canadian border and for more than one hundred years has lived in peace 
with the people of Canada, four hundred and fifty thousand of us stoutly favor every reasonable effort looking to 
adequate national preparedness. 

Buffalo, the one uniquely cosmopolitan city of the United States — a city composed of almost equal parts of a citi- 
zenship of German, Irish, Italian, Hungarian and Polish antecedents — is in unanimous accord with the sentiment 
"America First" and an America able at all times to take care of herself on land and sea, at home and abroad, 
under any and all circumstances. 

The people of Buffalo do not want the United States to go to war with any nation on earth — they desire peace and 
good will between Americans and all others. Yet, if wars do come in the future, even as wars have sometimes been 
our national portion in the past, then every last Buffalonian will be proud to have his country ready for the foe, 
and everything that you and I and the rest of us can do toward creating an invincible America will be in accord with 
the highest ethics and the highest patriotism, and will prove that we are worthy of those who bequeathed to us a 
great, progressive, enlightened Republic. 

We had no serious objection to others going to war as long as they remained on the European 
■continent and did not interfere with our peace and contentment. Germany, however, was even 

28 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

then engaged in arousing a hostile agitation on our Southern border by the means of paid agents 
among the Mexicans, which, in later years we learned, had its inspiration right in the royal chairs 
of the German imperial war lords; and, coupled with other overt acts on the highseas and here- 
tofore spoken of, made it fairly certain that if war came our way it would be war with Germany. 

Neither the Mayor's speech nor the occasion for it attracted any great amount of attention 
here at home. The episode may have impressed the Mayor and the others who were present. 
Probably it did. The Mayor seemed to feel the necessity of preparedness as a desirable pre- 
caution, not as a need; still he did not delay putting the city in entire accord with the plans of 
The National Security League. He announced, immediately after his return, the appointment 
of a committee of one hundred representative men to form the Buffalo branch of that League. 
Mr. Hollister was chosen as its first president; A. Conger Goodyear, afterwards a colonel in the 
United States Army, was made treasurer; Harold .J. Balliett, former city clerk and an active 
worker in all civic enterprises, secretary. In addition to those mentioned, the executive com- 
mittee was made up of the following members: Louis L. Babcock, Lyman M. Bass, Edward H. 
Butler, Marshall Clinton, John F. Cochrane, James L. Crane, Boleslaw Dorasewicz, Gen. Francis 
V. Greene, Harry D. Kirkover, Horace Lanza, Herbert A. Meldrum, Charles Mosier, Charles 
P. Norton, Hugo Schoellkopf, Harry L. Taylor, George P. Urban and Orson E. Yeager. 

The local branch fully completed its organization in November; established headquarters at 
814 Fidelity Building, and opened a campaign for membership. The Mayor and Mr. Hollister 
had, earlier in the month, attended a conference in Chicago, and the committee had plans in 
embryo for the recruiting of the local regiments of the National Guard to full strength. It was 
a matter of general knowledge, at that time, that the enrollment of the local regiments was far 
below what might reasonably have been expected. The distaste for service as guardsmen was 
deep-seated and not easily to be corrected. Buffalo boasted of two splendid new armories, one 
for the use of the 74th Regiment of Infantry, located opposite Prospect Park, at Niagara and 
Connecticut Streets; the other at Masten and Best Streets for the use of the 65th Regiment, 
also an infantry regiment. The State had in the course of construction and about to be formally 
opened a new armory on Delavan Avenue, opposite Forest Lawn, for the use of Troop I, First 
Cavalry, National Guard — a cracking good organization of young troopers. These State mili- 
tary quarters were equipped with the latest recreational facilities and club aiTangements calcu- 
lated to attract young men. But despite all this, the falling off in membership was very notice- 
able and a matter of keen regret among military men generally throughout the city. A strike 
of the street railway employees a few years before had proved so disastrous to property that it 
was deemed necessary to call out the local regiments to guard the cars and, possibly, the lives of 
those who sought to ride on them. The guardsmen proved themselves real soldiers, took orders, 
and performed their duty, but their relations with the striking car men formed through associa- 
tion in co-operating labor organizations brought a resentment against strike duty and soon left 
the militia companies considerably undermanned. Later the regiments were called for strike 
service at the Gould Coupling Works at Depew, N. Y. That strike occurred late in March, 1914. 
The soldiers were on duty there about two weeks. Naturally, the Security League turned its 
attention toward rectifying, if possible, that condition of affairs in the national guard organiza- 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 29 


GROWING out of the Bankers' Club banquet of November 3d an effort was made to co-ordinate 
- the various preparedness movements in the State, and, early in January, 1916, Mayor 
John Purroy Mitchel of New York City, a very earnest worker, appointed a New York 
City committee which became known as the Mayor's Committee on National Defense. 

Mayor Mitchel, while still Chief Executive of the first city of America, enlisted for training 
at the citizens' training camp at Plattsburg; and, after leaving the office of Mayor two years 
later, was given a commission in the aviation section of the National Army. He was killed by 
a fall fi'om his aeroplane while training at Kelly Field, Texas, for overseas service. 

The committee he appointed early in January, 1916, did considerable work throughout the 
State. An exchange of letters between the secretary of Mayor Mitchel's committee and Chair- 
man Hollister of the Buffalo organization gave a very fair idea of the manner in which the pre- 
paredness plans had progressed up to that time, and also an outline of the aims of those pre- 
paredness pioneers. 

Mayor's Committee on National Defense 
Municipal Building, Rooms 914-916, New York 

January 13, 1916. 
Hon. Louis P. Fuhrmann, Mayor, 

Buffalo, N. Y. 
Dear Sir: 

I have the honor to inform you that this committee is now organized and prepared to undertake active labors. We should be glad to receive 
information as to the work which the Committee on preparedness appointed by you has undertaken and is doing, and hope that it may be possible 
for us to co-operate to common advantage in the nation-wide effort to increase the readiness of the United States for National Defense. 

May your Secretary send me the names of the officers and the correct address of your Committee, together with the names of those cities in 
New York known to you besides Buffalo, Syracuse and New York in which a Citizens' Committee has been appointed by the Mayor? 

Very truly yours, 

(Signed) Gordon Ireland, Secretary. 

Mr. Gordon Ireland, January 18, 1916. 

Secretary, Mayor's Committee on National Defense, 
914 Municipal Building. New York City. 
Dear Sir: 

Mayor Fuhrmann has referred to me your letter of the 13th instant in regard to the work accomplished by the Committee which he appointed 
to co-operate in support of the preparedness program of the National Security League. C>ur Committee of One Hundred has not only supported 
the activities of the Buffalo Branch of the National Security League, which now has a membership of over 400 prominent citizens of Buffalo, but 
has also undertaken to assist in the building up of the two National Guard Regiments of this city. At a meeting which we held for this purpose 
on November 26th, we adopted a resolution calling upon all employers of men eligible for service in the Guard to grant vacations with pay to such 
of their employees who are members of the Guard, when away on duty. I enclose a copy of this resolution, which was published in the papers and 
sent to the large employers of labor in this city. 

At the same meeting the Committee also unanimously adopted a resolution upon the subject of Preparedness, a copy of which is also enclosed 

Mayor Fuhrmann and I also attended the Chicago convention of the National Security League in November, as representatives of the Citizens' 
Committee of Buffalo, as well as of the Buffalo Branch of the National Security League. 

The Citizens' Committee will also be represented at the Congress of the National Security League to be held in Washington this week. 

In December the Citizens' Committee, in co-operation with the Buffalo Branch of the Security League, obtained the consent of the owners of 
the Buffalo Hippodrome to hold one of the performances of the moving picture exhibition known as "The Battle Cry of Peace" under the joint 
auspices of the Committee and the Security League. There were about 3.000 people present at this meeting, and Henry A. Wise Wood of New 
York delivered a half-hour address on the subject of Preparedness. 

I also enclose herewith, at your request, a list of the members of the Citizens' Committee, together with their addresses. 

Yours very truly, 

(Signed) Evan Hollister, Chairman. 

Mr. Hollister and his committee applied themselves to the task of inculcating the preparedness 
idea in the public mind, at the same time inaugurating various movements calculated to arouse 
the military spirit in the people. It seems we grew more familial- with martial airs. It was not 
uncommon for our after-dinner speakers to refer to the desirability of national preparedness, 
and, now and then, the vaudeville performers carried the thought in their songs, their mono- 
logues and dialogues. A part of, and growing out of, this movement came a Congress of Con- 
structive Patriotism, held in the City of Washington on January 25th, 26th and 27th. That 
conference was attended by a number of Buffalonians headed by Mr. Hollister and Mayor 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 31 

Fuhrmann. Returning, the members of the committee, on January 28th held a well attended meet- 
ing for the purpose of drawing recruits into the local regiments. General Samuel M. Welch of the 
Fourth Brigade, N. G. N. Y., and Councilman Charles B. Hill, a former national guardsman, 
had much to do with the plans for the meeting, the general atmosphere of which was voiced in 
a speech* delivered by Mayor Fuhrmann on that occasion. 

The meeting was only partially successful. Bradley Goodyear, a young inan of wealth and 
position, Chauncey J. Hamlin, son of Harry Hamlin and grandson of Cicero J. Hamlin, one of 
the builders of Buffalo, and others of more or less prominent positions enlisted in the 65th In- 
fantry, N. G. N. Y., joining with Colonel Charles E. P. Babcock, Lieut. Col. John D. Howland, 
Majors Louis H. Eller and James P. Fowler, Captains Kennedy, Marks, Colprice, Barrett, Brost, 
Scholl, Hinds, Williams, Webber and Patrick J. Keeler, a judge of the City Court, Chaplain 
Fornes and other earnest workers for the rehabilitation of the regiment. They made gains, and 
they made sacrifices. Mr. Hamlin was chairman of the Progressive Party organization ; he was, 
also, actively engaged in business enterprises and legal work, but was compelled, along with the 
others in that regimental i-ecruiting campaign, .seriously to neglect his personal affairs. Col. 
Charles J. Wolf of the 74th Regiment, with Lieut. Col. Beck, Majors Arthur Kemp, William R. 
Pooley, Lyman A. Wood; Captains Ralph K. Robertson, Ziegler, Montgomery, Kaffenberger, 
Kean, Minniss, Hubbell, Miller, Gillig, Taggart, Kendall, Sanburg, Kneubel, Branch, Cadotte, 
Bagnall, Maldiner and Arthur C. Schaefer, Deputy Commissioner of Health for the city, likewise 
gave their time and best efforts to bring their regiment to a substantial footing. To those men- 
tioned should be added. Chaplain John C. Ward, who followed the fortunes of the old 74th Regi- 
ment, not only through those very earnest recruiting times, but down into Texas, to the Mexican 
border, across seas, and through the smoke and thunder of battle until victory was achieved and 
the triumphant regiment returned. He, with every other member of the regiment, figuratively 
speaking, took off his coat to aid Chairman Hollister and the Security League Committee in 
arousing here the spirit of preparedness. They toiled day after day — in the shops, stores, theaters, 
churches. It would not be accurate to say they created any great amount of enthusiasm, but 
it is fair to say they toiled. On the other hand, their efforts were not wasted. They had sown 
the seed of education, and so, in the latter months of the year, when we actually drew close to 
war, it was not necessary to go over that ground again. 

There was but little in the enlistments to encourage them, although they did gradually build 
the regiments up to a reasonable size. From January to June those workers forced the campaign. 
Then our military affairs took a turn toward the Southern border where the Mexicans, under 
spur from outside sources, were threatening the lives of American citizens and it daily became 
more and more evident that intervention by the United States in Mexico was inevitable. 

*Mr. Chairtiian and Honored Guests: 

I want to thank General Welch, Councilman Hill and the gentlemen in charge of this gathering for their courtesy shown me in asking me to 
participate with them in this initial meeting in behalf of the 65th Regiment. 

At the outset let me say that I know that Buffalo, the city of which I have the honor to be the official head for the time being is solidly in 
favor of the policy (jf national preparedness. 

I have just returned from a great gathering at Washington which emphasized and urged the need of a larger army and a larger navy. I 
learned from the President of the United States and the Speaker of the House of Representatives and others, that our national law-making body 
is presently to confront and solve this momentous problem. 

The difficulties before our national legislators are two-fold. First arises the question: "What degree of preparedness will the American people 
stand for?" and, second, "Where are the necessary revenues coming from to pay for these defense measures?" 

Serious questions these are, my friends. Yet. I feel morally sure that when the final test comes, party lines will be forgotten and our repre- 
sentatives in the House and Senate will measure up to their full duty and patriotically vote for adequate defense legislation. 

To-night we have this particular burden on our minds, namely, what can we do and what will we do to strengthen our two Buffalo regiments — 
the 74th and the 65th? That they need additional strength is a matter of common knowledge. With my fellow townsmen I am here to urge 
others and to pledge myself to join in a campaign to secure the necessary hundreds of men to fill these regiments to their full quota. 

There are some, I am informed, who refuse to join the regiments because they object to the calling out of the militia during times of strikes. 
As a public official I have always acted on the principle that the local public authorities could and must preserve order and enforce laws at all 
times. I know that by exercising the unlimited power which we have to swear in special police we could cope with almost every possible occasion, 
and that the necessity would almost never arise of calling out the State Militia. 

The public mind is soon to give its deepest attention to what our legislators shall say and do on the paramount and supreme question before 
this session of Congress. .\nd while my fellow-citizens are urging our representatives to stand by and stand up for a policy of national prepared- 
ness, I appeal to every patriotic Buffalonian here at home to prove anew our patriotism and honor by bringing up our two regiments to their 
complete numerical standard. 

32 Buffalo's Part in the World War 


THROUGH the late months of Winter and the early months of Spring of 1916 the new city 
government spent its time in the adjustment of the various functions of the municipal 
machine to the new schedule of operation. Bureaus and departments received "speed up" 
orders. There was much for the new commissioners to learn and to do. While they applied 
themselves to the multiplicity of tasks before them, the local regimental officers addressed them- 
selves to the work of recruiting for the regiments, and the representatives of the National Se- 
curity League bent their backs with a will to the spread of the preparedness pi'opaganda. 

In order that the national need for more adequate defense might be sharply impressed upon 
the people. President Wilson set out from Washington on January 27th, 1916, at the head of the 
preparedness movement for a tour of the country, speaking first in New York on January 28th. 
That campaign attracted widespread interest; the President was welcomed by immense throngs 
wherever he traveled, and local speakers of note everywhere added their voice of warning to the 
appeal of the Nation's Chief Executive. The people were interested but not alarmed; they 
listened, and simply heard. 

Here in Bufi'alo the officers of the local regiments and the National Security League were dil- 
igently at work. It was no uncommon thing then to drop into a church club meeting, a pedro 
party, or a men's club smoker and find Captain Patrick Keeler or Chauncey Hamlin painting a 
word picture of the forward gun on a foreign warship knocking the top off the Woolworth Building 
in New York, or of a foreign army rushing unmolested through Pennsylvania and New York. Look- 
ing back from this threshold of peace over the devastated areas of France it is difficult to realize 
that we were then creating the great offensive machine which finally drove back the German 

The army for home defense for which Keeler and Hamlin and hundreds of others then appealed 
became in reality, two years later, an irresistible military machine in a foreign land. Their appeals 
however, at that period fell on rather indifferent ears. Still, they were not discouraged and con- 
tinued to map out new progress. From street corner and club speeches they turned toward 
the school. There, at least, they found the adventurous spirit of boyhood, and soon there ap- 
peared a plan for the formation of a University of Buffalo Company in the 65th Regiment. It 
was a novelty for the college boys and they took to the suggestion ; in fact, they took to the sug- 
gestion much more readily than had been anticipated, and the project went through in a com- 
mendable way. 

The psychological moment for enlistment was created at a meeting held in the 65th Regiment 
Armory January 29th where the sound of the gymnasium apparatus, the pump-pump-pump 
of the basket ball, and the whir-r-r of the bicycle riders as they tore around the training ti-ack 
of the immense drill hall thrilled the college boys, while the general neatness and military splendor 
of the uniformed officers and the men of the regiment touched off the spark of patriotism which 
lies, sometimes dormant but ever present, in the breast of every American boy. The meeting 
was presided over by Chancellor Charles P. Norton of the University and his heart was in the 
effort. "There is a picture," he said, "which none of us wishes to see. We can picture for a 
moment the country caught unprepared for a struggle forced on us. We may look for a moment 
on the homes of Buffalo smoking, its buildings and its institutions shattered by shells, its women 
fleeing, its babes trampled in the streets, and the red blood of carnage in every byway. If the 
present condition should continue and that scene come to pass and the great God to judge us, our 
answer would be, 'We were not ready'. Do you believe the people of the United States want to 
see such a picture? — an event which might happen were there no trained men to respond to the 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 


Soldiers' and Sailors" Monument, Lafayette Square 

As it appeared before the war 

Captain Keeler followed Chancellor Norton. Mayor Fuhi-mann and Brigadier General Welch 
likewise addressed the boys. Captain Hamilton Ward, who had given many years to service in 
the local militia, made the final plea. "There was a time," he said, "when 300 trained British 
soldiers invaded and burned Buffalo, and 3,000 untrained and unprepared militiamen fled into 
the woods. We learned the lesson again in the Civil War. Only the pen of Horace Greeley 
kept up courage. We have not forgotten the Spanish-American war. We were unpu-epared then. 
We lost 500 men by gunshot in Cuba and 5,000 men from disease in the camps because we were 
not prepared to care for these men. Are w^e again to be caught unprepared if war should come?" 

The University boys answered that question so far as their limited numbers would permit by 
then and there offei'ing themselves for enlistment, and a U. of B. company for the 65th Regiment 
was organized. It was, however, a small quota in comparison to the enlistments desired, but as 
the movement was as much an educational endeavor to arouse public sentiment as it was to secure 
recruits, the benefits of this effort could not fairly be measured by counting the men who affixed 
their signatures to enrollment blanks. 

34 Buffalo's Part in the World War 


IT is inconceivable that the public, under the constant pressure of the National Security League, 
should have failed to find recreational interest at least in the preparedness movement. But 
no particular enemy was discernible, and we were still living in the aloofness of the Monroe 
Doctrine. Opinion was divided on the question of whether trouble might reasonably be 
expected with England or with Germany, in the event of difficulty with any European country. 
To clarify the atmosphere of any assumption that this Nation was then planning a military cam- 
paign, the President repeatedly stated in his speeches that we were not. But he did say on 
innumerable occasions that the conflict then in progress would be in all likelihood the last great 
war from whose maelstrom we could remain free; in fact, he made clear the purpose of the pre- 
paredness campaign by saying: 

"We can no longer be a provincial nation. 

"Let no man dare to say, if he would speak the truth, that the question of preparation for national defense is a 
question of war or of peace. 

"There is no spirit of aggrandizement in America. There is no desire on the part of any thoughtful and conscien- 
tious man to take one foot of territory from any nation in the world. And I myself share to the bottom of my heart 
that profound love of peace. I have sought to maintain peace against very great, and sometimes very unfair odds, 
and I am ready, at any time, to use every power that is in me to prevent such a catastrophe as war coming to this 

"So that it is not permissible for any man to say that the defense of the nation has the least tinge in it of desire 
for power which can be used to bring on war. But, gentlemen, there is something that the American people love 
better than they love peace. They love the principles upon which their political life is founded. They are ready 
at any time to fight for the vindication of their character and of their honor. They will at no time seek a contest, 
but they will at no time cravenly avoid it. Because if there is one thing that the country ought to fight for and that 
every nation ought to fight for, it is the integrity of its own convictions. We cannot surrender our convictions. I 
would rather surrender territory than surrender those ideals which are the staff of life for the soul itself. And because 
we hold certain ideals, we have thought it was right we should hold them for others as well as for ourselves. America 
has more than once given evidence of the generosity and disinterestedness of its love for liberty." 

The President concluded his campaign early in February, but the agencies of patriotism and 
of preparedness continued actively at the task before them. In Buffalo a new impetus was given 
to the effort when the local committee conceived the idea of holding an immense mass meeting 
in the Broadway Auditorium at which the Governor of the State would be the principal speaker. 
The meeting was called by Mayor Fuhrmann and was held on the evening of Saturday, February 
26th. All avenues leading to the hall were packed and it was difficult to gain admission. Archer 
A. Landon, of the Chamber of Commerce, presided, and the speakers, other than Governor Whit- 
man and Mr. Landon, were Mayor Fuhi-mann and Captain Keeler. 

Buffalo answered the call to preparedness that night at a monster mass meeting. The en- 
thusiasm aroused by Governor Whitman in his appeal for the proper defense of the nation cul- 
minated in an excitement of patriotic fervor at the close when the war record of Buffalo men had 
been reviewed and the young men in the audience, willing to play their part in defense of the flag, 
were asked to stand. 

Gray-haired men stood up with the youths in all parts of the hall. The enthusiasm that 
swept through the hall as a great American flag was released from the girders over the heads of 
the Governor and other men on the stage brought men and women to their feet, waving hats 
and canes and handkerchiefs and cheering. 

Governor Whitman, in his evening dress, stood at the front of the stage with the full staff of 
gold-braided, red-striped military aides about him. Khaki-clad members of the Buffalo Cavalry 
Association made their way through the wide aisles, collecting the pledge cards then signed by 
the men standing on chairs and the floor in an.swer to the question : 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 35 

"Are you ready as a citizen to do i/our dutii for the national defense, for the safety and the liberty of 
the dag?" 

At the top of the patriotic intensity, the 65th and 74th regiment bands struck up "America." 
Governor Whitman's was the voice which led the singing. The singing continued while the rest 
of the sections cleared the seats for the doors. The like of that mass meeting was never before 
seen in Buffalo. 

While Captain Patrick J. Keeler of the 65th regiment was recounting the deeds of valor by 
Buffalo men in the Civil and Spanish-American wars, he called from the front row of seats a small 
man of ruddy, smiling face. 

"There is Pat Pierce," Captain Keeler said. "When Hobson called for thirteen volunteers to 
go in the Merrimac and sink it at the mouth of the harbor, two of the men he accepted were 
Buffalo men. Seven of those men escaped after the ship blew up. They were taken prisoner- 
and thrown into the dungeons of Morro Castle. Pat Pierce was one of the seven. He lives at 
No. 72 Hammerschmidt Street and is a freight conductor to-day for the Pennsylvania. .Just a 
few days ago he received, after all those years, the Congress medal of honor — the highest award 
that can be made an American serving his country." 

That was one of the high spots of applause during the close of the meeting. Governor Whit- 
man came forward to the edge of the platform and shook hands with Pat Pierce. 

"May I see your medal?" the Governor asked. 

Mr. Pierce had it in an envelope. The Governor held it up to view and showed it to the mili- 
tary aides about him. 

Among military men and others interested in the science of war and military training, the 
question of the future of the volunteer system was always a live subject for debate. Draft laws 
were not popular and never had been in this country. Militarism was, likewise, without sup- 
porters among the people, for it was militarism which at that moment had forced the cataclysmic 
conflict raging among the European nations. There was, however, a well defined sentiment in 
favor of a military course of some sort in the schools, but that proposition had its able opponents, 
as well as its able proponents. The League to Enforce Peace, of which William H. Taft was 
president, was urgently pressing its campaign for the formation of a world league which would 
end wars for all time by the establishment of a tribunal for the settlement of national grievances. 
The speech of Governor Charles S. Whitman at the Auditorium meeting of that February night 
fully and adequately reflected public sentiment on those questions as it then existed : 

"I want to speak plainly to the parents and the guardians who object to having their boys in the National Guard. 
Will you tell me that the training is going to make him a bad boy. a worthless young man when it teaches him obedi- 
ence to orders, respect for authority and the ability to take care of himself? When it teaches him a patriotism that 
is the surest guaranty of the safety and permanence of the free institutions of the United States. 

"We as a nation must become trained to citizenship, trained to a finer manhood. The only way at present open 
is through the National Guard. Here in Buffalo you have the opportunity offered by the finest armories in the 

"Nothing is further from my purpose than to attempt to sound a note of alarm, for the subject is too vital to be 
complicated by passion and prejudice. Not because I dream of war, but because I want peace with all the power 
of my heart and soul, I stand flatly and squarely with those who are insisting upon some sound scheme of adequate 
preparedness. In common with all others whose sanity has not been undermined by the specious arguments of mili- 
tarism, I look to a day when a great world parliament will provide machinery for the orderly adjustment of inter- 
national disputes — the glorious day when racial hates will have given way to the spirit of universal brotherhood. But 
madness still rests upon the face of the earth. 

"As to the form of this preparedness, I have long since committed myself in opposition to the so-called volunteer 
system. Even the most cursory study of history, American as well as European, proves conclusively that the vol- 
unteer system has been a failure, is now a failure and must continue to be a failure. As unfair as it is undemocratic, 
this system permits inequalities and makes discriminations, sending the brave and patriotic to fields of death and 
allowing the base and cowardly to remain at home, profiting by sacrifices in which they play no part. What is this, 
in the last analysis, but the penalization of patriotism and the placing of a premium on poltroonery? 

"It is not compulsory military service that I preach. It is compulsory military training of the American youth 
that I advocate, holding it to be the one true base of the citizen-soldiery idea. It is our good fortune not to be forced 

36 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

to run the risks of the experimental in this important matter, for in the world to-day there are two successful demon- 
strations of the citizen-soldiery system — Switzerland and Australia. 

"The Swiss system has been widely advertised, and is more known of men and yet the Australian system appeals 
to me as better fitted to our peculiar needs. Like Switzerland, Australia proceeds upon the sound belief that national 
defense is an inescapable obligation of citizenship and as vital a national consideration as education itself. As a 
consequence, the two essentials are linked, and march forward hand in hand. 

"From twelve to nineteen the boy receives instruction in the schools. He learns the fundamentals of soldiering, 
drilling, marching, map reading, map making, trench digging, bridge building, tactics, sanitation, personal hygiene — 
all these come to him just as his grammar and arithmetic come, simply and naturally. On his nineteenth birthday 
he becomes a member of the citizen forces. He is presented with the full equipment of a soldier, for which he is held 
responsible. He is called upon for eleven days of service each year until his 26th year. After his 26th year the young 
defender passes into the reserve forces. He has learned not only to be a good soldier, but the instruction has helped 
to make him a good citizen." 

At the conclusion of the Governor's address, President Frank B. Baird of the Chamber of 
Commerce arose to present a resolution. Mr. Baird was one of Buffalo's thorough, substantial 
Americans of the war period, and much esteemed because of his indefatigable efforts in civic 
enterprises. His presence signified the support of the business interests to the movement, as the 
presence of Governor Whitman and Mayor Fuhrmann had signified the support of the State 
and the city. The resolution was read in an attentive silence. It was as follows: 

We, the citizens of Buffalo, in mass meeting assembled, do hereby proclaim our deep-seated convic- 
tion that to insure the preservation of our glorious heritage of liberty and freedom we should forthwith 
adopt in this country some such truly democratic form of universal military training as has won for 
the republic of Switzerland the deserved admiration of the world and has helped to keep her at peace 
amid the ravages of a workl war touching on her every frontier. 

Appreciating, however, the delay necessarily^ involved in putting such a systeyn into effect, even if 
adopted, we, therefore, declare that it is our immediate duty and patriotic obligation as American 
citizens to do the only practical thing open for us now to do, and that is to forthwith Imild up and 
strengthen our first and only line of defense — the regular army and the national guard. 

Therefore, we, citizens of Buffalo, in mass meeting assembled, inspired by a deep sense of our duty 
to our country in this hour of world crisis, do hereby resolve: 

First, That the chairman of this meeting be and he hereby is requested to forthwith appoint a com- 
mittee of 100 citizens whose duty it shall he to present to the President and Congress of the United 
States and the Governor and Legislature of the State of New York copies of these resolutions, and who 
shall be further autliorized to take such other .steps as they may deem advisable to further any legisla- 
tion they deem necessary to make effective the recommendations herein contained. 

Second, That appreciating the grave situation of our country arising through the serious lack of 
men trained even in the elementary rudiments of the art of war, we, individually, here and now, with- 
orit waiting for any legislation, state or national, pledge our support to the national guard, and indi- 
vidually declare our intention of forthwith taking such steps as we feel in duty bound to take to recruit 
the local units of the national guard up to their full strength. 

When the question on the foregoing resolution was put by Chairman Landon, the ayes it re- 
ceived vibrated against the girders and found a hundred echoes in the nooks and corners of the 
immense old edifice. All in all, the meeting had proved a wonderful demonstration of patriotic 
fervor and willingness to serve. 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 37 



■ ARCH came along, after the preparedness events of the last chapter, and with it came the 
Mayor's conference at St. Louis and another shower of patriotism. Across the Southern 
border in Mexico outlawry was spreading. April and May followed much like March 
so far as our national affairs were concerned. Mexican aggressions were increasing, and the 
danger of our entanglement in the European conflict, like the rock of Gibraltar, was always there. 

Following that February mass meeting at the Auditorium the preparedness campaign went 
through three months of desultory firing, but ever advancing. The plans of the League came to 
a splendid fruition with great force and volume in June and out of a clear sky, at a time and in a 
manner which none of those originally in the movement had anticipated ! 

A. Conger Goodyear, son of Charles W. Goodyear, forester, lumber king, railroad president 
and a founder of the Pan-American Exposition, was chosen Marshal for a parade to be held on 
June 24th. He in turn had selected Ansley W. Sawyer, a local guardsman, for chief of staff, and, 
with their co-workers, they assisted Mr. Hollister's League in arousing the commercial, profes- 
sional, industrial, religious and civic organizations to joining in a monster preparedness parade. 
Buffalo had not then grown more intei'ested in the overseas struggle. We were going along our 
war-listless way, concerned deeply with our own affairs, taking a look now and then at Europe, 
perhaps to see who was ahead, or what new and devilish implement of warfare the Hohenzollern 
war party had devised. In May, and possibly June, Bufl^alo joked about the coming prepared- 
ness parade. There was no hostility to it, but no genuine feeling that such a thing was necessary. 
Some may have felt otherwise, but not the masses. It received considerable notice in the news- 
papers. Probably the versatile press agent was at work. Leaders in the industries organized 
their shops. Clergymen of all faiths gave cordial support. The Rev. Thomas J. Walsh, then 
chancellor of the Catholic Diocese of Buffalo, announced that 50 priests of that faith would march 
in the parade, and the Rev. Cameron J. Davis, representing the Protestant clergymen of the city, 
made a somewhat similar announcement. The spirit of the thing was growing rapidly. On 
June 7th, at a meeting of the new city government. Councilman John F. Malone offered the 
following resolution : 

"Resolved, That Saturday, June 24th, 1916, from noon until midnight be, and is hereby declared a civic holiday 
within the limits of the city of Buffalo." 

The resolution was adopted with the approval of Councilmen Heald, Hill, Kreinheder and 
Malone. Mayor Fuhrmann was absent. 

A few days after that meeting, Marshal Goodyear announced his complete staff for the parade, 
and the following order of formation and the names of the division marshals: 

Squad of Mounted Police; Marshal of Parade and Staff; Mayor and Council of the City of Buffalo; 74th Regi- 
ment N. G. N. Y.; 65th Regiment N. G. N. Y.; Troop I, First Cavalry, N. G. N. Y.; Naval Militia; U. S. Army 
Detail; Aero Squadron; Spanish War Veterans; U. S. S. Marine Post 73. 


Clergymen's Division 

Rev. Thomas J. Walsh, Rev. Cameron J. Davis, Marshals. 

County and City Employees, George C. Diehl, Marshal; Federal Employees, George Bleistein, Marshal; Retail 
Merchants, Herbert A. Meldrum, Marshal; Furniture Division, Laurens Enos, Marshal; Insurance Division, Frank 
W. Fiske, Marshal; Real Estate Division, F. W. Kilhoffer, Marshal; Jewelers' Division, Edward A. Eisele, Marshal; 
Traveling Men's Division, A. J. Fitzgibbons, Marshal; Hardware Division, George Walbridge, Marshal; Wholesale 
Grocers and Produce, Frank E. Wattles, Marshal; Boot and Shoe Division, William H. Walker, Marshal: Platts- 
burg Training Camp Division, George H. Field, Marshal; Buffalo Infantry Association, Montford Ryan, 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 


Public Utilities and Heating. Charles R. Huntley, Marshal; Bankers and Brokers, Edward W. Dunn, Marshal; 
Iron and Steel, Charles McCullough, Jr., Marshal; Women's Division, Mrs. Frank W. Fiske, Jr., Marshal; Trans- 
portation Division, William Elmer, Marshal. 


Auto Manufacturers, George K. Birge, Marshal; Sheet Metal, L. R. Cooper, Marshal; Aeroplanes, Glenn H. Cur- 
tiss. Marshal; Lancaster Division, August Blangden, Marshal; Coal Trade Division, Major Louis H. EUer, Mar- 
shal; Fine Arts, Duane S. Lyman, Marshal; Engineers, John Younger, Marshal; Doctors, Dr. Charles Cary, Marshal; 
Dentists, J. Wright Beach, Marshal; Stationary Engineers, John W. McGillvray, Marshal; Packers, Jacob C. Dold, 
Marshal; Machinery, Charles P. Devine. Marshal: Baking Division, James B. Dwyer. Marshal; Soap Manufactur- 
ers, John D. Larkin, Jr , Marshal; Rubber Manufacturers. Herbert H. Hewitt, Marshal. 


Law-yers, Louis L. Babcock, Marshal; Newspapers, Edward H. Butler, Marshal; Auto Trade, Mason B. Hatch, 
Marshal; Paint, Oil and Varnish, F. W. Robinson, Marshal; Druggists. W. H. Reiman, Marshal; College and School 
Division, Mark Hopkins. Marshal; Heating and Plumbing. H. J. Rente, Marshal; Milling Division, Frank F. 
Henry, Marshal: Foundries. William H. Barr, Marshal; Building and Trades. Ballard I. Crooker, Marshal; Lumber 
Division, Maurice M. Wall, Marshal; Wallboard, Wallpaper and Paper Boxes, William F. MacGlashan, Marshal; 
Engine and Boilermakers' Division, David Bell. Marshal; Graphic Arts Division, David L. Johnson, Marshal: 
Brewing Division, Col. John L. Schwartz. Marshal: Aniline Dyes Divison, C. P. Hugo Schoellkopf, Marshal; Petro- 
leum Division, Horace P. Chamberlain, Marshal; Chemical, Reginald S. Richards, Marshal; Wholesale Drygoods, 
Joseph A. McColl, Marshal: Milk Products, Edward C. Sutton, Marshal; Clothing Manufacturers, Benjamin 
Hirsch, Marshal; Leather, Henry C. Zeller. Marshal: Men s Preparedness Battalion, Henry P. Werner, Marshal; 
A. C. Goodyear, Grand Marshal; Ansley W. Sawyer, Chief of Staff. 

Saturday, June 24th, 1916, was a bright, hot, summer day. The morning was clear. Very 
early everybody in the city was astir with a desire either to participate in the parade or to secure 
a desirable spot from which to view it. The street urchins were at their vantage points at dawn. 

Buffalo's Preparedness Parade, June, IHlti 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 39 

At noon the pavement was giving off a glow, and the throng on the west side of the street was 
steaming. Main Street crowded up early and the marching bands and squads, seeking their 
place of formation, animated traffic in the downtown part of the city. Shortly before 2 o'clock 
every division was at its appointed post. Some of them did not leave for hours, so gi'eat was 
the number of patriotic men and women who turned out. Buffalo at that moment was but 
one of a hundred or more American cities whose citizens were in line to step forth at 2 o'clock 
as a signal to Washington that the masses of America demanded an adequate degree of prepared- 
ness for home defense in the United States. 

The parade started exactly at 2 o'clock. The last division filed past the reviewing stand in 
Lafayette Square at 5.15 o'clock, and the pageant had passed into history. It was generally 
acknowledged at that time and since to have been the greatest patriotic procession Buffalo had 
ever seen. The G. A. R. Encampment pageant of 1897, which was graced by the presence of the 
martyred President William McKinley, and the departure of the 1.3th U. S. Infantry, U. S. Army 
regulars, from Fort Porter at the opening of the Spanish-American war, are the only former 
marching spectacles that were mentioned, or might be mentioned, in comparison. The flame 
of patriotism lit by that June day procession blazed, and the city glowed for days and weeks 
thereafter; in fact, fi'om the fervor of that academic moment, the city stepped into the realities 
of war holding that torch still lit and burning with increasing radiance: 

"/ pledge allegiance to my flay and to the Republic for which it stands — one nation, indivisible; with liberty and 
justice for all." 

In those lines might be found the keynote of the day. It tells all there is to be said; yet, as 
they left the ranks of marchers, drenched from the heavy downpour more than once encountered, 
men and women little realized how near the day when the nation, involved in the greatest war 
of history, would exact the fulfillment of that pledge. 

In the light of after events, the parade spelled a momentous day in Buffalo's history. It will 
stand in the memory of Buffalonians of that period as a demonstration of an Americanism that 
knew no difference of race or creed — an Americanism single in its devotion to the Stars and Stripes. 
The watchword of the march was preparedness for the nation; the transcendent idea was an 
adequate defense for home and institutions. It was Buffalo's shot heard round the State. Abso- 
lute and unqualified consecration to the nation was mirrored in eveiy man and woman in the 
procession and on the walks, Hats were flying, banners waving, and from a hundred thousand 
throats came an almost constant cheer. For every man and woman in the parade, two had taken 
their place on the sidewalks on both sides of Main Street between Exchange and Summer streets. 
The martial music of the bands kept hearts atune. Men and women sang the old songs of the 
Republic : 

"My Country, 'tis of Thee, 
Sweet land of Liberty, 
Of Thee I sing." 

And the younger folk, catching the spirit of the day, joined in the singing: 

"America, I lone you. 
You are a sweetheart of mine. 
From ocean to ocean, 
For you my devotion 
Is touching each boundary line — 

And there's a hundred million 
others like me." 

The military division gave the keynote to the spirit of the day. It touched every last pulse- 
beat of patriotism in every one of the thousands in the street. The infantrymen stirred the hope 
that America might be so well safeguarded by a volunteer force throughout the land that its 
preparedness might remove even the temptation fi'om any power to infringe on the rights or the 
ideals of the Republic. 

40 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

Rain started at 2.50 o'clock while the parade was in motion. For several minutes before that 
the storm clouds were banking the sky with the black threat of rain. The breeze that stirred 
the waste paper in the street and whipped the flags from store windows was a grateful visitor 
among the throng in the sweltering street. Then the rain! Everyone scampered for the shelter 
of awning and store front. Streets which had been jammed to suffocation were cleared in a 
minute. But the marchers continued. Umbrellas were raised in the line and on them the 
heavy raindrops spattered and bounded. The rain raced up the street in a downpour that 
drenched marchers and spectators to the skin. For twenty minutes the downpour continued. 
The marchers continued also, laughing and chaffing each other, waving their flags above their 
heads and shouting out their enthusiasm. The rain passed. 

When the women's section came along, everyone wondered whei'e the women could have hidden 
during the downpour. For they came in spotless white of dress and waist, unrumpled, certainly 
not damp enough to cling to their arms. The women's section was, next to the military division, 
the most impressive of the parade. From the dense black of the men's divisions, distinguished 
by the yellow of straw hats and the red of the flags, the street for a mile back gave way to a seeth- 
ing stream of white. 

The store and building fronts burst, it seemed, into a waving flag of flags as far as the eye could 
see. There was unstinted applause. Mrs. John Miller Horton marched at the head of the divi- 
sion. Women carried flags which the breeze straightened out. 

After it had all passed and the eventful day was done it was found that all eyes were focused 
on Mexico. What began in an effort to arouse the nation to the fear of Germany and a proffer 
of help to France and Great Britain ended with all eyes on the Mexican border. We still were 
unaware of the proximity of that European struggle. 

An editorial in The Courier of Sunday, June 25, 1916, the day following the parade, indicated 
very clearly the trend of the public mind : 

"Buffalo never before witnessed such a parade of its men and women, or offered so grand an exhibit. The weather 
conditions were not such as were wished, but they could not dampen the public enthusiasm. Hour after hour the 
columns moved in files on the Main Street pavement's full width, amid a multitude of bands and flags innumerable. 
It was a glorious demonstration of the love of our people for their country and of their unity of purpose that protec- 
tion shall be made for its defense. 

"When the preparedness parade was planned, no emergency was immediately in view. The thought was that 
the nation should be put in readiness for danger the future might bring. It was a somewhat abstract provision, pro- 
moted by experiences other countries have undergone. Suddenly the matter of our difficult relations with Mexico 
had developed, bringing war in view as almost a certainty. The National Guard is under arms. Our Buffalo 
regiments are in expectation of being sent away. A wider call to the colors may be sounded by the Government 
soon, and if a voluntary army must be raised immediately, regiments can be recruited from the tens of thousands of 
splendid young men who yesterday swelled the marching throng in defense of the flag. 

"The parade was not intended for the cultivation of militarism in a nation of which the greatness has been obtained 
through the arts and industries of peace; but yesterday something of the war spirit has been incited by Mexican 
insults and atrocities. We wished to help Mexico out of social and economic chaos, but it has bitten the hand of 
kindness. The attacks upon American border towns, and lastly the apparent killing of our cavalrymen, have so 
filled the measure of offense that armed intervention may be unavoidable. 

"The report is that Carranza's answer to the last communication from the Government of the United States will 
be made public in Mexico City to-day. If he prefers war to peace with this power, war will ensue — and, if so, all 
America will throb with the patriotic fervor which yesterday caused the pulse of Buffalo to quicken." 

On Monday morning came the announcement that Major General Leonard Wood, commander 
of the Department of the East, had received from Secretary of War Baker an urgent appeal to 
start for the border at once some of the militia organizations under his command. On Tuesday 
Troop I had entrained, and the rush to fill up the 65th and 74th regiments was rapidly under way. 
Buffalo's military men were headed for Mexico. The flame of the preparedness parade carried 
the city into the plans for intervention in Mexico with patriotic enthusiasm. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 



IN January, 1916, the government developments in Mexico indicated a more or less serious 
situation along the Mexican border, and it became apparent to the Federal authorities that 
both Carranza, the head of the Mexican government, and Villa, the outlaw chief, were bent 
on deviltry. On the surface of things, Carranza could not control the activities of the Villa army 
of desperadoes, but, in the light of subsequent events, it is possible that Carranza desired no 
more public control over Villa's acts than Kaiser Wilhelm over the murderous operations of his 
submai'ine commanders. In each instance, the subordinates were going about their villainous 
work in a manner not entirely unsatisfactory to their superiors. In any event, the trend of 
affairs on our Southern border through the Spring of 1916 was drawing the LTnited States closer 
daily to a conflict with our Mexican neighbors. 

Depredations along the frontier became insolent, as well as destructive, and the lives of civilian 
residents were constantly in jeopardy. 

A "speed up" order about that time set the local mihtary men on their toes, and, as soon as it 
appeared reasonably certain that the militia might be called out for service against Mexico there 
was a rustle about the armories, and an interest in soldierly work which showed that the men in 
the militia, at least, were anxious and ready for service or adventure. 

Mexican intervention to most people then seemed for all the world like a miniature war, but 
it became apparent the trouble would not end until the United States stepped in and administered 
a spanking to the outlaw Villa and his unruly army. The problem had a serious aspect as well, 
for the mountainous country into which the American army would have to follow the Villa forces 


Troop I on a Practice March 

42 Buffalo's Part in the \A'orld War 

afforded an opportunity to the Mexican brigands to carry on the sort of warfare they liked, and 
would have endangered the lives of many of our men. But the time had come for intervention, 
and the proximity of the trouble gave a zest to it that put the country, for the first time since the 
Spanish-American war, into a military stride. Buffalo military men who rarely wore their 
uniforms outside the armories could be seen on the streets with boot and spur. Enlistment 
headquarters sprang up on street corners. The local commanders sought eagerly to fill up their 
regiments, and, with the arrival of Spring, the campaign to secure recruits was under a full head 
of steam. 

While we were thus engaged in preparation for our own little war, the depredations of the Ger- 
man submarine were increasing and the underseas power of the Central Empires became menacing 
in the extreme. England and France had begun to feel the serious effect of this attack on their 
source of supplies, and Germany was not at all adverse to keeping the United States busily en- 
gaged with the Mexican problem. It was subsequently defijiitely established that the Mexi- 
can government had promises of assistance from the German government so that the trouble we 
were experiencing in Mexico was not entirely divorced from the plans of the German Emperor 
in his quest for world domination. The American mind, however, had not centered on any such 
thought at that time. Accordingly, we failed to put the two together, but went along with our 
Mexican task as a simple proposition between ourselves and Mexico. 

As the Mexican problem had been brewing before the Eui-opean war began it was easy to con- 
sider it as an affair quite apart from the larger struggle overseas. 

Some few Americans had joined the Canadian army at the time we were making ready to head 
into Mexico. 

Captain William J. Donovan, the able and enthusiastic commander of Troop I, First Cavalry, 
had gone abroad on a special mission for the Rockefeller Foundation. His troop was one of the 
first to be called out for duty on the Mexican border. 

General Pershing, with the regulars, was well on his way into Mexico when on June 19th Presi- 
dent Wilson called the militia into Federal service. An opportunity was afforded the guardsmen 
to drop out if they did not wish to enter the national muster. Very few took advantage of it, 
and the transformation of the local regiments from the service of the State to the service of the 
Nation took substantially the entire regiment in each case. The Buffalo regiments, and, pre- 
sumably all others through the State, were poorly equipped. An example of the lack of pre- 
paredness for war was shown by an order which then came to Colonel Wolf, 74th Infantry, direct- 
ing him to organize a machine gun company in his regiment. At that time the war in Europe 
had been raging under the terrible power of machine gun paraphernalia for two years. But it 
was all so far from us that no serious thought had been given to the proper equipment of the 
militia. There was not a machine gun companv in the entire national guard of the State of New 

The Buffalo Courier of June 25th, in giving an account of the activity in local military circles, 

"Col. Charles .J. Wolf of the Seventy-Fourth Regiment was ordered last night to organize and equip a machine 
gun company, which means the command will go to Camp Whitman as an organization of thirteen companies. The 
order was telegraphed to Col. Wolf by Major General John F. O'Ryan, with instructions to report immediately when 
the company had been organized and fully equipped. 

"The use of the machine gun has become quite an important factor in modern warfare, so it was e.xplained by 
officers who told of the great eflectiveness of the weapon in the European war, and of the slaughter recently wrought 
by Mexicans who turned a machine gun on members of the Tenth United States Cavalry at Carrizal. 

"Although many machine guns are in use in the United States Army, few of the national guard organizations 
have them, and the order of General O'Ryan is taken here to indicate that similar instructions will be given to other 
New York State regiments and, perhaps, to militia units in every section of the country." 

About that time, both local regiments were found to be short of uniforms and other equipment 
for the new men, and the commanders were notified that no more would be shipped to Buffalo. 
Old uniforms, long since discarded, were drawn out of the lockers. The more fortunate recruits 

Buffalo's Part in the World ^^'AR 


74th Regiment at Drill 

Colonel Kemp and officers marching by in review 

became the proud possessors of these. The regiments lacked, also, an adequate number of guns, 
but it was understood, and afterward assured, that a further shipment of supplies would go to 
the men in camp. In addition to the fact that our militia was, in the first instance, far below 
war strength, and, secondly, that we had no machine gun companies, it was also apparent we had 
no sufficient hospital force, no balloon companies, no hand grenades, no trench mortars, no tanks, 
no air force, and not any of the steel helmets, which later saved thousands of lives in Europe. We 
had no thought of war, and we were therefore not equipped for war. 

44 Buffalo's Part in the World War 



TROOP I alone of the Buffalo military units seemed to be at war strength, and, accordingly, 
was the first contingent to get under way. The echoes of the preparedness parade of 
Saturday, June 24th, had hardly died away when the cavalrymen were assembling pre- 
paratory to leaving. The troop train was pulled in on a switch in Northland Avenue where the 
railroad men had been in the habit of shunting circus trains when circus day came around. To 
the small boy the occasion may have seemed like a circus day. The crowd was there, and the 
excitement. The irrepressible vender of buttons and flags and toy balloons was present, and 
the peanut man, with his fresh-roasted supply, was not to be denied the opportunity. It was 
a more serious occasion, however, to the parents and friends of the boys, who pushed through 
the throng to implant a parting kiss or give the last parental word of advice. The boys were 
going away on serious business. Therefore it was a serious occasion. But it developed that 
the serious business was not to come on that trip. Nor from the direction in which they were 
then headed. 

Members of the 74th and the 65th regiments had been growing impatient over the delay in 
their orders. Only one company in the two regiments — Company I of the 65th, composed almost 
entirely of men of Polish descent — was at full war strength. Some of the other regiments in the 
State at full war strength, or nearly so, had already left for the border. In an eleventh hour 
effort to stir the patriotism of the young men of the city and possibly induce them to enlist, 
Brigadier General William Wilson of the Fourth Brigade, Colonel Wolf and Colonel Babcock 
issued personal appeals for recruits. The appeals were issued on June 27th, the morning follow- 
ing the departure of Troop I. General Wilson said: "It is disappointing that Buffalo has not 
given us more men. In fact, the whole country has shown slowness to respond, but there is a 
contrast between Buffalo and the smaller towns in this brigade district. The Third moves out 
to-night with a regiment practically at war strength. Many companies have more than war 
strength and many men are listed in class A of the depot company. 

"For the week ending June 17th the two Buffalo regiments had approximately 750 officers 
and men each and needed, in round figures, about 1,950 men each. That would show that they 
still have to enlist about 2,400 men to complete the two regiments. 

"To-day the Buffalo regiments have, in round figures, about 1,000 men apiece. They have 
raised few more than 500 men between them. We greatly appreciate efforts that have been put 
forward by officers and public-spirited citizens, but the result has been only about one-fifth of 
what we started out to accomplish." 

The appeals of the regimental officers, the spirit engendered by the preparedness parade and 
the excitement attendant upon the departure of Troop I all tended to a further upbuilding of the 
two regiments. Throughout that week there was a splendid improvement. At the height of the 
campaign, and in the midst of the enthusiasm over preparations for departure, an order came 
from Albany relieving Colonel Babcock from command of the 65th and Colonel Wolf from the 
command of the 74th. Immediately the two regiments were pitched into a gloom from which 
they were slow in emerging. It would be of little material value to recount here the charges and 
counter charges which went back and forth over this order. It was a keen disappointment to 
the members of both regiments. The new commanders were not residents of Buffalo. Whether 
justly or not it was assumed that official favoritism was responsible for their presence. The 
enlisted men proved good soldiers, however, and, when the orders came for their departure, they 
accepted the new conditions with good heart, marching away with a determination to do their 
bit faithfully and fully. Colonel N. B. Thurston, who was given command of the 74th Regiment, 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 


died at McAllen, Texas, on January 15th, 1917. Colonel Daniel W. Hand of the Regular Army 
succeeded to the command of the 65th Regiment. He remained with the regiment through the 
border campaign and foi" a short time after the return from the border. Orders having been 
issued to transform the 65th into an artillery regiment, the Hasten Street men as they were 
known, were mobilized on the 19th of .June and left Buffalo on .June 28th. They arrived at 
Camp Whitman, Peekskill, N. Y., the following day. On July 10th they were changed into a field 
artillery unit, but were not mustered into the Federal service until August 5th, and did not leave 
Camp Whitman for the border until early in October. While in Texas the regiment was sta- 
tioned at McAllen. The 74th received entrainment orders from Major General Wood on July 
4th. The regiment had been Federalized on July 1st and left Buffalo for Pharr, Texas, on July 
5th, being moved to McAllen on .January 12th, 1917. 

Buffalo National Guardsmen Training for Service 

The Mexican campaign was neither exciting nor exacting. The camp was situated badly 
and the men endured much bad weather and general discomfort, but they took it without com- 
plaint. Strenuous drilling and severity of discipline that winter returned the regiment to Buffalo 
a body of regulars, which later were used as shock troops in France. Before the end of the year 
it was apparent that the government would not need an army for the Mexican task, as the Mexi- 
cans themselves were inclined to return to peaceful relations with this country, though German 
intriguers were still at work on both sides of the Rio Grande. 

46 Buffalo's Part in the World War 


EARLY in January, 1916, criticism — mild criticism some may say — was aimed at President 
Wilson for his failure to do more than merely parley with the German government. Theo- 
dore Roosevelt, former President, at least was rather sharp in his censures of the Presi- 
dent's policy, but, while that agitation tended to a growth of the war spirit in some sections of 
the Nation, there was still no widespread desire to take part in the conflict abroad. The tradi- 
tion of non-interference in the poHtical affairs of Europe was too deeply rooted in our national 
life to be easily overthrown. The first consideration, we were told, which stiffened the govern- 
ment in its efforts to remain neutral was the traditional sense of responsibility toward all the 
republics to the south of us. The American government was constantly in touch with the coun- 
tries of Central and South America. They, too, we were told, preferred the ways of peace. The 
authorities in Washington felt a very obvious obligation to safeguard the interests of those coun- 
tries with our own. The second consideration, often developed in the President's speeches, was 
the hope and expectation that by keeping aloof from the entanglements and bitter passions of 
the involved nations we might be free at the end of the war to tender our good offices and bind 
up the wounds of the conflict. 

It was becoming daily more evident, however, that the German government was not keeping 
faith in its promised submarine policy, and its aggressiveness and indifference to the rights of our 
citizens must have convinced the President that if we were to continue to remain neutral even 
in this war some further steps must be taken. Accordingly, he began the preparation of a note 
to be addressed to the warring nations asking them to define their war purposes and aims. 

Before that note was despatched the first German peace offer was promulgated. That move 
came as a surprise. Germany had met with defeat at the Marne in the early stages of its invasion 
of France, but the decisiveness of the military sequel, as seen in the retrospect of that December 
moment, was open to question. At the time of its peace offering Germany was in rather a strong 
position.* The note was despatched on December 12th and brought a somewhat prevalent belief 
that the looked-for conclusion of wasteful and cruel and unnecessary war had perhaps arrived. 
But underlying the proffer was further evidence of German trickery and deceit. It viewed the 
struggle as a "catastrophe," and an injury to the "most precious achievements of humanity," 
but it also carried the conviction that the peace terms must be such as would build up a great 
Central Empire under German domination. 

It was reported that unofficial word came to Washington that unless the neutrals used their 
influence to bring the war to an end on terms satisfactory to Berlin, Germany would consider 
herself and her allies free to make such warfare as she chose without respect to the rights of 

*The first official proposal for peace came from Germany, at the close of the year 1916, at a time when, in Germany's eyes, victory for her army 
was already at hand. In the west the Allies had no more than held the German line: while in the east the Central Powers had gained the aid of 
Turkey and Bulgaria, had overrun Poland, Serbia, Roumania, and had inflicted serious reverses upon the British in Mesopotamia. The Italians 
were advancing towards Trieste, and the sea was cleared of German merchant ships; but during the first two years then closing, the fortunes of 
war were decidedly with Germany and her allies. Under these circumstances the German Government offered to discuss peace, confident that 
if the Allies accepted the offer she could get what she wanted, while if they refused it, it could be made to appear that they were responsible for 
prolonging the conflict. 

The offer was contained in a note dated December 12, 1916, and forwarded to the belligerents through the neutral powers, Spain, Switzerland, 
■ and the United States. The essential paragraph of the note is the following: 

Our aims are not to shatter nor annihilate our adversaries. In spite of our consciousness of our military and economic strength 
and our readiness to continue the war (which has been forced upon us) to the bitter end, if necessary; at the same time, prompted by 
the desire to avoid further bloodshed and make an end of the atrocities of war, the four allied (Central) Powers propose to enter forth- 
with into peace negotiations. 
In the note which the German Government sent at the same time to the Pope, its aims were expressed as follows: 

Germany is carrying on a war of defense against her enemies, which aim at her destruction. She fights to assure the integrity of 
her frontiers and the liberty of the German nation, for the right which she cfeims to develop freely her intellectual and economic 
energies in peaceable competition and on an equal footing with other nations. 
Such an offer, clearly could have been made only by those who felt that they had the upper hand. It was not an offer of terms, but an offer 
to stop the war on condition that the Allies should signify a willingness to accept such terms as Germany might propose. For the Entente to have 
accepted the offer of a peace conference under the circumstances would have been equivalent to an "unconditional surrender" to Ger- 

The formal reply to the German offer was contained in a joint note of all the .\llied Governments, December 30, 1916. The .\llies refused to 
consider "a proposal which is empty and insincere." — U'ar BuTfon Comiiiilht\ 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 47 

neutral or non-belligerent nations. It became apparent that Germany's purpose was to unleash 
her submarines, and it is evident that the whole peace movement was conceived with the idea 
that it would be refused and thus give to the German government an excuse before its own people 
to justify open submarine warfare on the ships and citizens of the United States. It is difficult 
to conceive of any other purpose in the peace proposal. Germany at that moment was at the 
height of her military power and knew her advantage. 

It was at this stage that President Wilson addressed a note to the belligerent nations. The 
note was dated December 18, 1916— that is to say, six days after the German proposal for a peace 
conference was issued; but the note had been written, or at least determined upon, before that 
date, and the President was careful to say that his action was in no way associated with the over- 
tures of the Central Powers. In his note the President pointed out that each side professed to 
be fighting a defensive war; each side professed to be the champion of small nations; each side 
professed to be "ready to consider the formation of a League of nations to ensure peace and justice 
throughout the world." 

Thus the objects for which both sides wei'e fighting, "stated in general terms * * * seem to 
be the same." The President felt justified therefore in asking the belligerent powers if it would 
not be possible for them to avow the "precise objects which would, if attained, satisfy them and 
their people." The President felt justified in making this request, because the United States 
was "as vitally and directly interested as the governments now at war" in the "measures to be 
taken to secure the future peace of the world." 

This note had a double significance. It assumed that something more was necessary for as- 
suring "the future peace of the world" than the mere negotiation of particular peace treaties be- 
tween belligerents: and it asserted that in this larger question the United States would have 
something to say. The note amounted to saying that the war ought to result, not merely in 
the establishment of a satisfactory peace between the belligerents, but in the establishment of 
a new international order in which all nations would take part. 

The President on December 18th despatched his note to the belligerent countries asking for 
their war aims, and the year closed with the Republic very near to war with Germany and the 
people wholly unaware of the fact. The German peace note had created a new somnolence. We 
still believed that even a declai'ation of war could not take us into war; that in its gravest aspect 
our utmost function as a belligerent would be in despatching food and ammunition to the Allies. 

48 BuFPALo's Part in the World War 



IAUNCHING the preparedness movement in this city, as in other American cities, had been 
. no easy task. In some cities, notably Chicago, the effort had wholly failed. People were 
-^ not afraid of war, because they could not conceive how war was to come to them. They 
laughed at war's alarm. They smiled when public speakers talked of war. The only reason 
they gave ear to preparedness orators was the good old American practice of trying everything 
once. Here and there, however, the thought took root. Interested men, at various times 
throughout the year of 1916, advanced propositions looking to better preparation for national 
defense in the event of war. The preparedness parade, referred to in a preceding chapter, was 
of that sort, but the Mexican intervention absorbed all the effect of those movements, and what 
had been conceived as a general awakening of the people to the possibility of war with a European 
belligerent went with the national guard to the border. 

As the Mexican situation began to straighten itself out, and the soldiers once more faced to- 
wards home, the masses, content with our military display, were inclined to dismiss from their 
thoughts all consideration of preparedness plans and return again to their usual peaceful pursuits. 
That practice, however, they were not long to follow; for the activity of the German submarines 
on the ocean highways, the constant German aggressions against the rights of neutral nations, 
and the continual agitation on the part of a small body of patriotic Americans, like a hundred 
Paul Reveres dashing along with lantern and cry, succeeded in holding the country, against its 
own wish, to the urgent need for better national defense. 

The establishment of the National Security League was followed by the organization of the 
National Conference of Mayors, the Conference of Constructive Patriotism, The American De- 
fense Society, an organization for the promotion of Americanism in factory and school, and, per- 
haps, many others. Branches of those mentioned were established here, and Buffalo was listed 
among the foremost cities of the country in patriotic endeavor ; in fact, the earnestness of the men 
of Mr. Hollister's committee and of the municipal government in promoting patriotic enterprises, 
attracted national attention. Our militia regiments went to the Border undermanned, but that 
was true of nearly every regiment everywhere in the Union. We were in step with the men who 
were trying to arouse the country to a realization of its needs. 

On February 9, 1916, Mayor Fuhrmann received a letter from Mayor John Purroy Mitche! of 
New York* enlisting his co-operation and inviting him to attend a conference on National 
defense in St. Louis, on March 3d and 4th. Mayor Fuhrmann and Mr. Hollister attended the 
Conference, and returned more determined than ever to press their preparedness efforts at 

Plans for the organization of a system of military training in the high schools were submitted 
by Bayard Martin; proposals for a vigilance corps, and many other suggestions of a like nature, 
were presented to the city authorities. 

These matters were discussed by the Council, but it appeared to be the opinion of the local 
officials that if preparation of that sort was needed it would necessarily require a broader scope, 

*Dear Mr. Mayor: New York. February 8th, 1916. 

As a nation we are not adequately prepared for successful defense in case of attack. 

To assist in expressing the sentiment of the Country in favor of national defense, the undersigned are calling a meeting of the Mayors and the 
Mayors' National Defense Committees of the cities of the United States to meet in Conference in St. Louis on March 3 and 4, 1916. 

We ask your co-operation in this movement. If you have not done so. we suggest that you appoint a National Defense Committee of Citizens 
to take prompt action in this vital question, and that you urge such committee as far as possible to attend the St. Louis Conference. 

Our foreign policies are only as strong as our ability to enforce them. Our security is only as strong as our defenses are strong. The better 
able we are to defend ourselves, the less liable we are to be called upon to do so. Therefore, let us perfect our defenses and thus preserve and per- 
petuate our free institutions, our liberties and our national life. 

Yours very truly, 

John Purroy M[tchel, Mayor of New York; 
Henry W. Kie. Mayor of St. Louis: 
James G. Woodward, Mayor of Atlanta, Gar, 
James M. Curley, Mayor of Boston. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 49 

covering all those physically able and eligible for service. As a matter of fact there was no popular 
demand for anything of the kind, and the Council was not prepared to commit the city to military 
training until such time as the need became evident. No one in the Council, and but few out 
of it, believed that such a time would ever arrive. 

The Americanization project which came before the city that year received more serious atten- 
tion than the others, and towards the end of the year several pamphlets were issued under city 
financing for educational purposes. The co-operation of the teachers in the public and parochial 
schools was obtained. Much of the educational work, however, was performed by the Civic 
Education Association, and the brochures on citizenship and the need for Americanization issued 
by that organization were instructive, and w^ere widely read. In co-operation with the Civic 
Education Association, and to carry on the work generally throughout the city, Mayor Fuhr- 
mann appointed a committee of fifty on Americanization, and issued a proclamation* announcing 
the personnel of the committee. The Americanization plan was largely a local effort. Detroit 
and some other cities worked energetically, as did Buffalo, to achieve lasting results, and un- 
doubtedly much good was accomplished. The need for that work became apparent very soon 
thereafter, but at the time it was proposed it was looked upon as a hobby for those who had noth- 
ing of a serious nature to occupy their time. There is probably no way of determining what 
each of these movements accomplished singly or collectively. Surely they were not wholly un- 
shod of value. At least they were educative. A finely drawn dial recording the variations in 
the public mind from the beginning of the year would be needed to enable us to note the changes 
at the end. We were drifting toward the European war but we were still unconscious of the fact. 

*Whereas, never before in the history uf the world has it meant more to be an American citizen than it means to-day: and 
Whereas, in our own city of Buffalo, we have more than a hundred thousand persons of foreign birth who seek to work and live with us. shar- 
ing our responsibilities and privileges, but are handicapped through ignorance of our language — thirty thousand being totally without knowledge 
of it — and being thus prevented from full assimilation, 

Therefore, I, Louis P. Fuhrmann:, Mayor of the City of Buffalo, do hereby ask all citizens, both native and foreign, to give serious attention 
to this important city problem and co-operate to the best of their power with all existing educational authorities to make Buffalo an English-speak- 
ing city, and to this end, following the action of other progressive American cities. I appoint the following citizens to constitute a Committee of 
Fifty on Americanization: 

Mrs. Henry Altman, President of Buffalo City Federation of Woman's Clubs: Frank B. Baird, President of the Chamber of Commerce; Har- 
old J. Balliett, Secretary of the Department of Public Works; E. J. Barcalo, President of the Barealo Manufacturing Co.; William H. Barr, 
President of the Manufacturers' Association: Joseph Bellanca, President of the Italian-American Business Men; Mrs. Frank H. Bliss, Vice- 
President of the Civic Education Association; Walter L. Brown, Librarian of the Buffalo Public Librar\-; Mrs. Walter P. Cooke, President of 
the Twentieth Century Club; Frank A. Coupal. President of the Rotary Club; Rt. Rev. D. Dougherty, Bishop of the Diocese of Buffalo: H. P 
Emerson, Superintendent of Education: Mrs. John Knox Freeman, Director of the Civic Education Association: Dr. F. E. Fronczak, Health 
Commissioner of Buffalo: Robert W. Gallagher, President of the Greater Buffalo Club; W. P. Goodspeed, President of the Ad Club; Stuart A. 
Hayward, President of the Central Labor Council: Charles M. Heald. Commissioner of Public Affairs; Frank Henry, Manager of the Washburn- 
Crosby Co.; William H. Hill, Treasurer of the Crosby Co.; Evan HoUister, President of the Buffalo Security League: Mrs. John Miller Horton, 
Regent, Buffalo Chapter D. A. R.; Henry R. Howland, President of the Society of Mayflower Descendants; Arthur W. Hurd, M. D., President 
of the Sons of the American Revolution; Arnold E. Jenny. Director of the Y. M. C. A. English to Foreigners Work: Daniel J. Kenefick. Chair- 
man of the Board of Education: L. N. Kilman, United States Naturalization Examiner; Louis J. Kopald, Rabbi of the Temple of Beth Zion; 
Mrs. Josephine Kudlicka. Librarian of the Dom Polski Library; Horace O. Lanza. Attorney; Louis W. Marcus, Justice of the Supreme Court; 
Miss Martha Mazurowska, Department Principal of No. 7 School; H. A. Meldrum. Chairman of Chamber of Commerce Education Committee; 
W. A. Morgan, President of the Buffalo Copper & Brass RoHing Mill; Adelbert Moot. Attorney, Member of the State Board of Regents; Georee 
B. Montgomery. President of the Civic Education Committee: Henry D. Miles, President of the Buffalo Foundry & Machine Co.; Charles P. 
Norton, Chancellor of the University of Buffalo: Gustave Ohlin, Immigration Inspector: Richard O'Keefe, General Secretary of the Chamber of 
Commerce; Frank Olszanowski, President of the Dom Polski Association: Alexander Osborn, Chairman of the Ad Club Americanization Com- 
mittee; Rev. Alexander Pitass. St. Stanislaus Parochial School; Edwin A. Rumball, General Secretary of the Civic Education Association; Frank 
H. Severance, Secretary of the Buffalo Historical Society; George A. Smith. Supervisor of Educational Extension Work; Rev. Angelo Strazzioni, 
St. Anthony of Padua Parochial School; Harry L. Taylor, Justice of the Supreme Court; Rev. T. J. Walsh, Chancellor of the Diocese of Buffalo. 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 

Returning from the Mexican Border 

Troop I 74th Infantry 

3d Artillery 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 51 



A FTER two months in the mud at Pharr and McAlIen the national guardsmen of the several 
l\ States were ready to return home. It had become evident by that time they were not to 
•^ -^ go into action, and the men lost interest in the task to which they had been assigned. 
The Administration had no desire to keep them on the border longer than actual need required, 
and, early in December, some of the troops moved homeward. Buffalo wanted her sons back 
just as quickly as any other locality, and the pressure to secure an early demobilization of the 
Buffalo guardsmen was soon felt. That desire was expressed in newspaper interviews and edi- 
torials; in letters to public officials, and, finally, in resolutions which made their appearance in 
the Council minutes. On December 7th Mayor Fuhrmann directed a letter to the War Depart- 
ment at Washington urging the return of the Buffalo regiments. On December 12th he appointed 
"a committee to prepare a proper welcome for the soldiers now in Texas on their return to 
Buffalo." The personnel of the committee was as follows: 

Louis P. Fuhrmann, General Chairman; William A. Morgan, Chairman, Reception Committee; Dr. Walter 
S. GOODALE, Chairman, Executive Committee; Samuel B. Botsford, Chairman, Banquet Committee; Hans 
Schmidt, Chairman, Music Committee; Albert B. Wright, Chairman, Hall Committee, including Interior Deco- 
rations; Richard C. O'Keefe, Chairman, Committee of Street Decorations; Norman A. MacDonald, Chairman 
Finance Committee; Brigadier-General S. M. Welch, Chairman, Committee on Military; Mrs. Edward A. Eisele, 
Chairman, Women's Committee; Henry G. Anderson, Chairman, Auditing Committee. 

In the meantime information was brought to the city that an effort would be made to divide 
the forces of the Third Artillery (the old 65th Infantry) and that but a portion of the regiment 
would be returned to Buffalo. In view of the manner in which the local commanders had been 
relieved of their commands and out-of-town officers substituted on the eve of the departure of 
the regiments, the rumor was given very general credence. Newspapers and public officials 
gave expression to an aroused public sentiment, and a resolution presented to the Council on 
December 13th, 1916, by Commissioner Charles M. Heald, calling on the Federal Government 
to return the regiment intact, was unanimously adopted. 

The City of Buffalo probably has contributed more soldiers for the defense of our southern border in response to the call of the President than 
any other city in the country in proportion. All our citizens are justly proud of the three splendid military organizations, representing three 
branches of the service, which are now on the border. The Seventy-fourth, the Third Artillery and Troop I, we believe, are unexcelled in their 
respective fields. 

We may reasonably expect that these men who have upheld the honor of their country and their city will soon be returning home. It is fitting 
that the citizens of Buffalo be prepared to show their appreciation of the service of these three splendid organizations. 

It is also important that the Third Artillery Regiment be returned intact to Buffalo after its present term of service in the field. This regiment 
has one million dollars' worth of the latest and best ordnance equipment in the United States. It is said to be the latest word in heavy field artil- 
lery. It appears that efforts are being made by other sections of the country to have part of this great regiment taken from Buffalo and sent 
elsewhere. Buffalo must prevent any such action. This regiment was made an efficient fighting machine by the manhood of Buffalo. The mem- 
bers of this regiment are entitled by their service to have this organization with all its equipment maintained in Buffalo after their return. The 
citizens of Buffalo are also entitled to this at the hands of the nation. 

I. therefore, recommend the adoption of two resolutions, as follows: 

That the Council of the City of Buffalo hereby calls upon all citizens to unite in demanding that the Third New York Field Artillery be 
brought intact to Buffalo after its duty on the border has been performed and that the regiment, with all its equipment, be maintained in this city; 
and that the City Clerk be directed to send a copy of these resolutions to all of our representatives in the national and state legislatures. 

Charles M. Heald, Comr. of Public Affairs. 

In recognition of the city's demand no attempt, if contemplated, was made to divide the regi- 

On January 22d, 1917, the Council directed another communication sent to the Secretary of 
War, again urging the return of the Buffalo regiments. The request had scarcely reached the 
War Department when orders were issued by Brigadier General Parker of the Southern Depart- 
ment for the return of the 74th Regiment. Troop I and the 3d Artillery had been compelled, 
however, to remain, all of which was explained in a letter from Adjutant General Cruikshank 
presented to the Council on the following day: 

52 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

Dear Sir: 

I beg to advise you that the Commanding General, Southern Department, has recently designated for return home, for muster out, the 74th 
Infantry, National Guard of New York, which will, however, leave on the border the 1st Cavalry and the 3d Field Artillery. With respect to the 
last mentioned organization, it ma.v be stated that it did not arrive on the border until October 10, 1916, and that there are a number of organiza- 
tions of the National Guard which preceded the 3d Field Artillery to the border, which are still there and not under orders to return. 

The matter of returning National Guard organizations is in the hands of the Commanding General, Southern Department, who has full respon- 
sibility for the conduct of militar.v affairs on the Mexican border and who, in the selection of organizations to be returned is being guided by 
tactical and other reasons apparent to hira alone, and over which the War Department cannot wisely undertake to exercise control. 

The Department regrets, in view of the circumstances as set forth above, that it cannot be stated, at this time, with any degree of certainty, 
when the 1st Cavalry and the 3d Field Artillery, National Guard of New York, can be returned to their home stations for muster out. 

It was late in February before the 74th Regiment reached Buffalo. The reception committee 
had planned a splendid welcome and the men marched through cheering thousands to the Con- 
necticut Street Armory. They were greeted there by Governor Charles S. Whitman, Mayor 
Fuhrmann, Commissioners Heald, Hill, Kreinheder and Malone, William A. Morgan, Dr. Walter 
S. Goodale and other members of the reception committee. The Rev. William A. Sunday, a 
distinguished evangelist, then conducting services in Buffalo, left his tabernacle early in order to 
join in the city's ovation to her returning troops. Brief speeches were delivered by the Governor, 
by the Mayor and by Rev. Mr. Sunday, but their words scarcely reached the soldiers, for mothers, 
sisters and sweethearts had crowded the armory floor and the boys were receiving the real heart- 
felt welcome which only loved ones can give. After a luncheon in the officers' quarters the guests 
dispersed, and the regiment was formally mustered out of Federal service on February 24th. 

The Third Artillery and Troop I arrived in Buffalo on IVIarch 11 and 12. The first train sec- 
tion, bringing a part of the artillerj', reached the city on Sunday morning at 10 A. M.; another 
section arrived in the afternoon, and two others about midnight. The train carrying the mem- 
bers of Troop I arrived at 2.35 A. M. on Monday morning March 12. Governor Whitman came 
to Buffalo to greet these returning soldiers, as he had the members of the 74th Regiment. A 
parade was arranged to escort the men to their respective armories. It required some time to 
unload the heavy apparatus, and on Monday afternoon the streets were again crowded with a 
happy throng of Buffalonians bidding the boys a hearty welcome home. Governor Whitman 
and Commissioner Malone extended the official words of greeting. Colonel Hand for the 3d 
Artillery, and Captain William J. Donovan, who had returned from Europe to take command 
of his troopers on the border, responded for their respective commands. 

The homecomings were not, however, invested with any of the enthusiasm of permanence. 
The vicious submarine warfare begun by Germany had already made certain hostile relations 
with this country, and the returning soldiers were looking longingly toward the seaboard. They 
had smelled the smoke of powder and were eager for action. Of course, no one anticipated 
mobilization for foreign service; the men were to be mustered out. Even war on Germany, it 
was assumed, would not entail anything further than a more effective system of home defense. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 53 


ON January 1st, 1917, the agitation in favor of an early return of the local troops from the 
border was still intense and absorbed public interest. Affairs at Washington were rapidly 
taking on a grave aspect and Buffalo was not wholly unmindful of the turn in events. 
Germany's peace proposal of December was intensely autoci-atic, but Germany had established 
a military supremacy on all the battle fronts of Europe and, accordingly, to the uninterested 
throng of Buffalonians, like other Americans, who looked on with no more concern than the bet- 
less spectator at a horse race, Germany's peace pi-oposal did not seem extraordinarily exacting. 

The German peace note did not, however, carry the tone of a nation fighting a battle of defense, 
but rather of a nation which had already assumed the role of a conqueror. The proposal was a 
peace move calculated to set up a central empire to dominate first, Europe, and then whatever 
else without limit its powerful position might enable it to control. Also, the manifesto extended 
an invitation to any of Germany's enemies, who wished to accept a separate peace, so that the 
Imperial Government might the more easily crush its remaining enemies, and then take peaceful 
possession of the supplicant at its own good pleasure. 

While the German militaiy machine succeeded. German diplomacy failed. The Allies declined 
the peace proposal. Naturally and inevitably they were compelled to that decision; better a 
complete military reversal and annihilation than peace of the kind offered. But the German 
device was not viewed by all in the same light. To many it carried the conviction that Germany 
was seeking a settlement on terms not more exacting than her military successes up to that time 
entitled her to ask. Germany's method of conducting the war; her vicious treatment of the 
citizens of the countries through which her armies passed, outraged the American sense of de- 
cency, and, while our national position was still a matter of debate among the American people, 
the majority were swinging strongly against Germany. President Wilson's reply to the peace 
note met the approval of the Nation. It was not so strong as some wished it, nor did it carry 
all the promise that France and England had hoped it would. He answei-ed Germany with a 
counter proposal, and in his answer, for the first time, the proposition of a League of Nations was 
given definite form and official recognition. 

Germany had not been placing a false hope on the successful outcome of the negotiations. 
Her's was not a sincere peace initiative, though a portion of the public accepted it as such. Her 
ostensible determination to curb U-boat activities, apparently in answer to the American demand 
that the ruthless warfare of the ocean cease, was a determination of necessity adopted until such 
time as the Imperial Government believed itself equipped to control all operation on the ocean 

That moment was close at hand when she submitted her autocratic peace scheme. Knowl- 
edge of these facts had not reached the people of this city, nor of this country, when the New Year 
dawned, but such knowledge had already stirred oflScial Washington and had greatly disturbed 
the leaders of the Allies in London and in Paris. 

The insincerity of Germany in her peace suggestion and in hei- letters to this government, while 
widely suspected, was not completely established until late in March. Count Von Bernstorff, 
the German Ambassador to the United States, protested at Washington the earnest desire of 
his government to retain the friendship of the American people, and yet, at the same time, was 
in communication with the German foreign office in furtherance of innumei-able intrigues cal- 
culated to injure this nation. German propagandists, spies and plotters were thick in all sec- 
tions of the country. Munition plants, here and there, were destroyed, presumably by German 
agents. It was subsequently established that on .Januaiy 16th Count Von Bernstorff received 
secret orders to have all German ships, interned in this country, dismantled and their machinery 

54 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

ruined. That work was quietly planned to be carried out on a given signal. On January 19th 
the infamous letter* from Secretary Zimmermann, of the Portfolio of Foreign Affairs for the Impe- 
rial Government, was transmitted by Count Von Bernstorff to Minister Von Eckhert in Mexico. 

Germany's attempt to unite Mexico and Japan against the United States had been carried on 
while the Administration at Washington was going to extremes in an endeavor to avoid an armed 
clash with the forces of the Kaiser. President Wilson, accepting Germany's protestations of a 
desire for continued friendship with this countiy, endured flagrant violations of American rights 
on the sea, and breaches of neutrality on American soil. Official Washington endured them. 
They were resented by some, to be sure, but the masses were not for war at that time and sought 
to avoid it as long as it could be honorably avoided. Germany had her subtle intrigues carefully 
concealed, and, while Washington had worked earnestly to compel a peaceful recognition of Amer- 
ican i-ights and the protection of American interests, Germany had numbered the United States 
among her enemies from the start and was making provision to dwarf American efforts. 

The final German affront to this country came on the last day of January, 1917. On that day 
Count Von Bernstorff handed to Secretary of State Lansing a note in which the German Govern- 
ment announced its purpose to intensify and render more ruthless the operations of its submarines. 
The German Chancellor stated before the Imperial Diet at that time that the reason this unre- 
stricted policy had not been earlier employed was simply because the Imperial Government had 
not been ready to act before ; in other words, the delay was not out of respect to the protestations 
of the United States, as Germany had previously stated in its official communications, but by 
virtue of necessity. On February 3d, Secretary Lansing handed Count Von Bernstorff his pass- 
ports, and, on the same day the President addressed both Houses of Congress and announced 
the complete severance of diplomatic relations with Germany. At the same time he stated he 
did not regard the act as tantamount to a declaration of war. 

"We are the sincere friends of the German people," he said, "and earnestly desire to remain at peace 
with the Government which speaks for them. God grant that we may not be challenged by acts of wilful 
injustice on the part of the Government of Germany." 

Berlin, January 19, 1917. 

*"0n the first of February we intend to begin submarine warfare unrestricted. In spite of this, it is our intention to endeavor to keep neutral 
the United States of America. 

"If this attempt is not successful, we propose an alliance on the following basis with Mexico: That we shall make war together and together 
make peace. We shall give general financial support, and it is understood that Mexico is to reconquer the lost territory in New Mexico. Texas 
and Arizona. The details are left to you for settlement. 

"You are instructed to inform the President of Mexico of the above in the greatest confidence as soon as it is certain that there will be an out- 
break of war with the United States and suggest that the President of Mexico, on his own initiative, should communicate with Japan suggesting 
adherence at once to this plan; at the same time offer to mediate between Germany and Japan. 

"Please call to the attention of the President of Mexico that the employment of ruthless submarine warfare now promises to compel England to 
make peace in a few months." 

(Signed) Zimmermann. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 




ON the last day of February, 1917, while Buffalonians were celebrating the return of the 
troops from the border, a copy of the Zimmermann note to Mexico was made public. It 
stirred this city as it did Congress and the rest of the country. Action was demanded. 
President Wilson no longer held out hope that the United States could continue as the nation 
seeking to hold an even balance of judgment between disputants. And as much as the people 
had hoped to keep out of the fray they exhibited no little relief to be free from that reserve which 
is expected of a judge. On March 12th the order was issued to place armed guards on the Amer- 
ican merchant ships, and the country rapidly drifted toward a declaration of war. A special 
session of Congress, called by the President for April 16th, was shortly afterwards advanced to 
April 2d. Through all this agitation it never really became apparent to the people generally 
that a declaration of war would mean any serious sacrifice or the sending of troops out of the 

Buffalo's first realization that the war would reach into this city came about when the directors 
of the Chamber of Commerce were quietly called in special session with the City Council on Friday 
evening, March 23d, 1917. Councilmen Heald, Hill, Kreinheder and Malone attended. Mayor 
Fuhrmann, though invited, did not attend. He expressed a belief that the directors of the 
Chamber were unduly excited. The purpose of the meeting was to take all necessary steps to- 
ward guarding elevators, water and light plants, and other valuable properties, particularly 
the munition plants and industries supplying war material to the Allies. The excitement around 

Members of 74th Regiment Guarding Hailroad Bridges 

56 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

the Chamber of Commerce Building that night was intense, but the Mayor was not moved by 
the action taken there and endeavored to cool off the situation. He declined to wire the Governor 
for military assistance, and he subsequently declined to go to Albany to see the Governor on that 
sort of a mission. Commissioner Hill disagreed with the Mayor as to the necessity for immediate 
measures, and early Saturday morning started for the State Capitol to obtain an interview with 
Governor Whitman. Commissioner Hill urged the Governor to mobilize the 74th Regiment 
and throw a guard around the Buffalo water works pumping stations and the elevators. Mayor 
Fuhrmann contended that the guard of policemen then at those points furnished sufficient pro- 
tection : that no German sympathizers had been active here, basing that statement on the reports 
from John Martin, Chief of Police. He cautioned the people not to become wrought up or dis- 
turbed in their daily occupations. News of the meeting was made public on Saturday, March 24th. 

Rumors spread about the city rapidly on Sunday. Most of these, purporting to tell of attempts 
to blow up the water works and the electric plant on the River Road, and of other desperate 
plots, were unconfirmed and probably baseless. 

The excitement, however, necessitated some official recognition, and on Monday morning, 
March 26th, a conference was held in the office of ]\Iayor Fuhrmann. That consultation, attended 
by Police Chief Martin, Major Arthur Kemp and Captain Ralph K. Robertson of the 74th Regi- 
ment; A. A. Landon, president of the Chamber of Commerce; W. R. Huntley, president of the 
Buffalo General Electric Company; Arthur W. Kreinheder, Sheriff Edward Stengel, George C. 
Lehmann and Corporation Counsel William S. Rann settled most of the rumors. At the con- 
clusion of the conference Mayor Fuhrmann issued the following statement: 

"In view of the international cornplications and the need of reckoning with the local situation, I called 
a conference this morning at my office. 

"At this conference ice went into careful details concerning all the precautionary measures which 
have been taken and which might still be taken to insure the best possible protection for public and 
quasi-public ivorks. Consideration was also given to possibility of enlisting the services of the State 
militia for guard duty. 

"After a thorough discussion we reached the conclusion that the precautions already taken with 
reference to the protection of public municipal works are ample. It was decided to increase the guard 
at the electric power plant on the River Road, and this task has been assigned to Sheriff Stengel." 

Excitement about the City Hall was somewhat allayed by that action, and the business organi- 
zations took matters a bit easier. Out of the turmoil, however, was organized the Niagara De- 
fense League, whose activities during the war period were both extensive and commendable. 
At the regimental headquarters, however, from the date of the Zimmermann intrigue exposure 
the earnestness of preparations was marked. On March 10th Governor Whitman signed the 
appointment of Major Kemp as Colonel of the 74th, succeeding Colonel Thurston who had died 
on the border. Shortly thereafter Colonel Manus M'Closkey, who subsequently fought with 
the Second Division at Belleau Wood, and Captain .J. K. Parkins, U. S. A., arrived to muster 
the 74th men back into the Federal sei-vice. Recruiting stations were established at various 
points down town and the city passed through another intense recruiting campaign. Enlistments 
came more rapidly than when called for in connection with service on the border. General 
gossip had it that the Regular Army and possibly those in the National Guard would be called 
into service. Very few expected, even though war should be declared by Congress, any guards- 
men to be sent out of this country. On March 12th a meeting in Troop I headquarters in the 
Delavan Avenue Armory was held to organize an officers' reserve corps from among the members 
of the Buffalo-Plattsburg Association. The President's call for 87.000 men to fill the needs of the 
Navy, and the establishment of naval and marine recruiting stations all added to the interest 
occasioned by these preparations for defense. Speakers could be found on all the rostrums every- 
where urging young men to join the colors, and from across the border came appeals from Cana- 
dian officers to the Canadians living in this city to give a hand to their bi-others "over there." 

German submarines increased their piracies and merchant ships were sent to the bottom daily 
with their crews and cargoes. Some of these were American ships, and, as the time set for the 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 


City (Mlicials Inspecting Waterfront Property 

Mayor Fuhrmann and military men throw guard around BufTalo plants 

meeting of Congress drew near, the fighting spirit of the people became thoroughly aroused. 
Still, it was not expected that we would send troops across the ocean ; in fact, that thought had 
scarcely entered the public mind. Millions of men for home defense? Yes! But the possi- 
bility of a foreign expedition did not seem to be in the realm of actualities. The sentiment of 
that moment in Buffalo may be taken from an editorial excerpt which appeared in the Buffalo 
Commercial on March 22d, the day after President Wilson had decided the extra session of Con- 
gress should meet on April 2d instead of April 16th as previously announced. The editorial: 

"The things for the Government to do in this crisis are manifold. It must open the ports of the United States 
to the warships of all the nations at war with Germany. Its vast credits in gold must be available to those who are 
fighting for the same end as we are. We may also e.xtend to them supplies of war in still greater abundance, although 
there is reason to believe that the Allies have now a vast preponderance of war material. Our Navy must co-operate 
with the navies of Great Britain, France and Italy in keeping the ocean lanes clear of enemy submarines. .4 universal 
military service law must be passed, not in the expectation that the army will find an actual field for activity in the present 
war, but as a precaution and a guaranty for the future." 

Just about that time the Czar was dethroned and Russia became a Republic. From out of 
the war one dynasty had tumbled, and, even though it was a friendly dynasty, the sentiment 
began to crystallize that this conflict was not a mere war of kings in which we had, by right, only 
a spectator's part. As the day of the extraordinary session of Congress drew near, President 
Wilson prepared to go before that body and ask the Representatives of the Nation to declare 
the existence of a State of War with the Imperial Government of Germany. 

58 Buffalo's Part in the World War 


PORTENTS of war, multiplying through March, found a realization in April. Buffalo had 
awaited with keen interest the President's message which was read in Congress on April 
2d. It was generally anticipated that it would be a war message; most of the people, 
though not anxious, were ready for a declaration of hostilities. The young men especially had 
caught the enthusiasm of the hour, and the schools rang with patriotic songs and martial airs. 
Promptly at 12 o'clock noon on April 2d, as Congress was called to order, upwards of 75,000 
children and more than 3,000 teachers of the public and parochial schools assembled at their 
respective schools for patriotic exercises in recognition of the gravity of the situation with which 
Congress was about to deal. The program was simple. At exactly 12 o'clock the children sang 
"The Star Spangled Banner." The song concluded, they joined in rousing cheers for the Presi- 
dent, for George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, Mayor Fuhrmann, and every- 
one else who in their minds typified the American Government or American institutions. Appro- 
priate resolutions were adopted, and the ceremonies concluded with the singing of "America" 
and a salute to the flag. 

In the closing days of March, Mayor Fuhrmann received a letter from the Mayors' Committee 
of American Cities, the same that had been active in the preparedness movement, suggesting 
that all cities agree upon April 5th as a day to be set apart for mass meetings throughout 
the country, "and to pass such resolutions as will demonstrate to the world that the people of 
America are ready to act resolutely, promptly and patriotically to meet the crisis at hand." 

In black-face type at the top of the letter were several patriotic appeals: "The Nation is in 
peril!" " It is time to show our colors!" "We must defend our rights or we may soon have no 
rights to defend!" "Every one should stand by the President in defense of our country!" That 
call was heeded; in fact, the Mayor, Mr. Hollister and others in the Security League and the niany 
similar organizations which had sprung into being, were not long in formulating plans for a mass 
meeting to be held on the evening of April 5th at Elmwood Music Hall. On March 31st the 
Mayor appointed a committee of 100. Fully half of the men named had filed an acceptance 
within the day, and on the following day the Mayor issued a proclamation* to the people caUing 
on them to assemble at Elmwood Music Hall on the date set. 

The President's war message of April 2d set the country aglow with patriotic fervor, and though 
differences still existed in Congress, on the night of Buffalo's war meeting it was apparent 
that war with Germany would be declared within a short time. The immense gathering 
was itself aroused and in turn aroused the city to a higher pitch than had been experienced 
on any prior occasion. An overflow meeting was held at the First Presbyterian Church. 
Throughout the city civic organizations were likewise active, and at all of these, resolu- 
tions declaring devotion to America, and support for the President and Congress were adopted. 

Buffalonians volunteered that night their lives and fortunes as did their forefathers of Revo- 
lutionary fame; they stated a willingness to stake all in "the struggle of Democracy against 
Autocracy" for the peace and liberty of humanity. No such momentous rally had called the 
people together in this city since the early '60's, but we were in no such fearful mood as were the 
men and women of the earlier period. 

*To The People of Buffalo: 

Pursuant to the appeal addressed to me by fifty citizens of this city requesting a mass meeting to be held this week, to give public expression 
to the loyalty and patriotism of the citizens of Buffalo in upholding the President of the United States in the stard he is taking to maintain Amer- 
ican rights and to protect the lives of American citizens, I hereby call upon the people of Buffalo to assemble at Elmwood Music Hall, Wednesday 
evening, April 4th, at eight o'clock, for this purpose. 

Louis P. Fuhrmann, Mayor. 

We were staging some of the show; not much, but some. For example, a German singing 
society, the Buffalo Orpheus, was selected to sing America at the opening of the meeting. The 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 59 

Orpheus was chosen to do the singing to convey the impression that all Buffalo was a unit, all 
races one, in support of the determination against Germany. That probably was so as far as 
the Orpheus was concerned, but it was not entirely true among the masses. Debate was heavily 
supported on both sides, and sometimes intense, on the question of entering into "a foreign war." 

The cheering at Buffalo's patriotic meeting that night undoubtedly voiced the prevailing 
sentiment in the hearts of the audience. One young man in khaki, who had to climb over men 
and chairs to reach the front of the platform in order to deliver his brief speech, showed in every 
action his appreciation of the crisis and his eagerness for battle. That young man was Captain 
William J. Donovan of Troop I, who later as Major and then as Lieutenant Colonel, and finally 
as Colonel, distinguished himself on the battlefields of France. Other hundreds in Elmwood 
Music Hall that night felt likewise, but to the vast and overwhelming majority the actualities 
of war seemed at that time remote. The speakers, other than Captain Donovan, were Adelbert 
Moot, George H. Kennedy and John Lord O'Brian. Mayor Fuhrmann presided, and delivered 
the preliminary address. At the overflow meeting in the First Presbyterian Church, Rev. Andrew 
V. V. Raymond, pastor, presided. The audience was addressed by William L. Marcy, Mr. 
O'Brian and Mr. Moot. The committee having immediate charge of the arrangements for the 
meeting were Frank H. Callan, John K. Walker, George S. Buck (who later succeeded Mayor 
Fuhrmann as head of the city), Joseph Morey and Evan P. Hollister. The speeches of the 
evening accurately voiced the sentiments of the crowded hall, for the girders rang with enthusi- 
astic cheering of the throng, under the splendidly patriotic reasoning, and resonant oratory of 
the variujs speakers. 

Mayor Louis P. Fuhrmann was greeted with a burst of cheers as he arose to speak. He was 
interrupted again and again by cheers and applause as he made the following declaration: 

This mass meeting of the citizens of Buffalo is called for the purpose of upholding President Wilson, the official 
head of the United States, in his efforts to maintain the honor of our country. 

Among a free people public measures and policies are always debatable, but once a state of war exists there is just 
one thing, and only one thing for all of us to do, and that is to steadfastly stand by the Government and the Presi- 
dent. When the American flag goes up, all other flags must come down. That is the doctrine of Lexington and 
Concord, of Lake Erie and New Orleans, of Palo Alto and Buena Vista, of Antietam and Gettysburg, of Santiago 
and Manila Bay. 

As the American people upheld their former war presidents — Madison, Polk, Lincoln, McKinley — so, from this 
time on, President Wilson must have the ungrudging and continued support of the hundred million who enjoy the 
blessings of liberty and equality under the Stars and Stripes. Regardless of racial antecedents, there is and must 
be only one kind of Americans in America, and that is Americans who are with the President and the Government 
to the uttermost; Americans who are willing to make every sacrifice of life and treasure necessary in the common 
effort to uphold the integrity of our country. 

Buffalo, the home of Millard Fillmore and of Grover Cleveland, is a loyal, patriotic city. Each and every one of 
our half million people has a genuine love for our great republic. All that we have and all that we are we owe to its 
institutions. Our fathers came from over the seas to establish a free government for all. I know I speak the sober 
truth when I say that the spirit of the fathers lives forever in their sons. We are of the same breed as they and we 
will prove ourselves just as loyal and just as unconquerable. 

John Lord O'Brian, the next speaker, paid a high tribute to the Germans who came to the 
United States to escape the military oppression that was felt in their land in 1848. He described 
the public service of these German-Americans and their sons in the years that have followed, 
becoming leaders in the business, professional and political life of this and many other commu- 
nities. Mr. O'Brian then i-ecalled the work of the United States for humanity in the Spanish- 
American war, the Boxer rebellion and in opening the doors of Japan to civilization. 

George H. Kennedy delivered the principal address. It was earnest and forceful. At times 
he was forced to stop and wipe the perspiration from his forehead, for he was just recovering from 
an illness and was not a well man. His speech, however, was a masterpiece of logic and elo- 
quence. In part he said: 

' 'At the opening of the Civil War the Sixth Massachusetts Regiment marched down Broadway in New York City. 
A spectator stepped from the sidewalk and accosted one of the soldiers, enquiring from what place they came. With- 
out breaking step to the martial music of his regimental band, he replied, 'From Bunker Hill, from Bunker Hill.' 

60 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

And the thought which should go out from this great meeting to-night is the fact that we are moved by the same 
impulse that fired the shot at Concord Bridge, heard round the world. 

"If our forefathers were justified in 1775 in resisting the encroachment of the British crown, we are more than 
justified in repelling with force of arms the barbarous conduct of the German government. I can well imagine that 
'taxation without representation' in some period of the world's history might have been a legitimate subject for 
debate. But nowhere in the recorded history of civilization will you find the justification of the murder on the high 
seas of innocent women and children until the Prussian war party assumed control of the German Empire. 

"Whatever may be the consequences to us of our entering this war, it surely was not of our making. It was forced 
upon us. During the past two years we have suffered with a patience rarely exhibited by any first-class power in the 
history of the human race. Indignity after indignity has been heaped upon us until the measure was overflowing. 

"We have sacrificed everything except honor itself to avoid this conflict. And the nation that submits to the dic- 
tation of another power as to how, when and where it shall ferry its boats across the high seas, has reached that period 
of decline that precedes disaster, dismemberment and decay. 

"The finest thing about this conflict, the thing that will stand out to our greatest credit and be best remembered, 
that will surpass the glory of all our victories, is the high plane upon which our cause of battle is placed. We are not 
fighting for power, we are not battling for a place in the sun. (Applause.) 

"We covet no nation's territory, we want no people's money. But the right of our people to sail the high seas in 
our own boats, manned by our own seamen, guarded by our own flag, has never been surrendered to any power since 
John Paul Jones and Jack Barry fought their way to imperishable victory, and, pray God, it never will. 

"When this country had but three millions of people, with no army and with no navy, inspired by the words of 
Patrick Henry and Samuel Adams, it threw down the gage of battle to the acknowledged 'mistress of the seas.' When 
it has grown to more than one hundred millions of people, shall we allow a power hemmed in on all sides by her ene- 
mies to drive us ruthlessly from the seas? 

"We are all for President Wilson now. (Applause.) We are no longer party men seeking to control the political 
fortunes of our government. In this day of conflict there are no Democrats; there are no Republicans; there are no 
Irish; there are no Germans; there are no Canadians; there are no foreign born, and in real service to our country 
there is no distinction in race or creed. We are all Americans with but one purpose in view — to maintain the power, 
the prestige and the honor of this republic." (Applause.) 

Adelbert Moot followed Mr. Kennedy as the final speaker of the evening. Mr. Moot said : 

"I am a peace man, never more so than to-night, and yet I'm heart and soul with President Wilson for war. I never 
was with him before, but I'm with him now because he speaks for my country, truly and well. 

"More than 140 years ago we set up a new government — and made it go— with the help of France. And in making 
it go we taught our mother country something about treatment of colonies, so that now England's territorial pos- 
sessions are pouring their wealth, resources and men gladly to the aid of the Allies. 

"Liberty-loving France now calls for our aid. Have we any cause for going to war? Should a peace man ever 
fight? In the Civil War there were more Quaker soldiers in proportion to the members of their sect than any other 
denomination. They weren't Quakers then, they were soldiers, and they did their duty. 

"To-day we have no more loyal citizens than those who have German blood in their veins. I have, and am proud 
of it. This is not a war on the German people. It is a war between autocracy and democracy. The whole question 
is; 'Is the brotherhood of man going to dominate the world or not?" 

"I'm a peace man, but I'm for war, because if Germany wins this war we'll have no peace. The only way to have 
peace is for us to aid in the fight against autocracy until the people get so tired of it they are ready to tumble it into 
the sea. 

"We could make peace with the German people in twenty minutes. We couldn't make peace with Prussian 
autocracy in twenty years. If the struggle ends right, great armies and navies will be unnecessary and we can begin 
to think about the better things of democracy." (Applause.) 

At the height of the enthusiasm Mayor Fuhrmann read a letter sent by President George Rand 
of the Alarine National Bank to President Wilson offering to raise a volunteer regiment. 

Hon. W(X)L)Row Wilson, Buffalo. N. Y.. April 3d, 1917. 

Executive Mansion. Washington, D. C. 
Dear Sir: 

The undersigned, recognizing the grave crisis now confronting our country in its threatened conflict with the German empire, and endorsing 
your magnificent stand and determination in upholding the dignity and rights o! American citizens at home and on the high seas, and being desir- 
ous of doing everything within my power to assist you and our country at this time, it gives me great pleasure to offer my services in recruiting 
an entire regiment of 1.000 men in this city, for home or overseas service, the expense of recruiting and equipment of whom I will defray personally, 
requesting only from the Government the supplying of two or three officials, preferably from the West Point Military Academy, to co-operate in 
the formation and drilling of such regiment. 

While I myself am without military knowledge and training, yet I should expect to devote my time to acquiring such knowledge and training 
as are necessary for service with said regiment. 

Trusting that it may be my privilege to have you accept my services in thus responding to our country's need at this time, I beg you to believe 
me, sir, your obedient servant. 

George Rand. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 


a» • 

Lillian Russell Aids Marine Recruiting 

Noted actress on the platform at Lafayette Square urges enlistments in the Marine Corps 

While the offer aroused the meeting and the community it was not accepted by the Govern- 
ment, however, because of a determination to end the volunteer system, if possible, and enlarge 
the army in ways which would not disturb industrial conditions. 

The meeting lasted until well into the night: crowds came and departed, and other crowds 
succeeded to their places. In Washington the House of Representatives was battling through 
the night in a determined stand to force a vote on the war resolution before adjourning. In the 
early hours of the morning of April 6th, while the throng was still lingering about Elmwood Music 
Hall, word came that war would be declared before morning and the prize to be fought for would 
be liberty and independence for mankind everywhere. The cry had already gone up: "The 
World Must Be Made Safe for Democracy." Early that morning the House, by an overwhelming 
majority, adopted the joint resolution already accepted by the Senate: 

"Whereas, the Imperial German Government has committed repeated acts of war against the Government and 
the people of the United States of America: therefore be it 

"Resolred by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, 
That the state of war between the United States and the Imperial German Government which has thus been thrust 
upon the United States is hereby formally declared; and that the President be, and he is hereby authorized and di- 
rected to employ the entire naval and military forces of the United States and the resources of the Government to 
carry on war against the Imperial German Government; and to bring the conflict to a successful termination all 
the resources of the country are hereby pledged by the Congress of the United States." 

At last the Nation was on its way to war and Buffalo was in step. 

62 Buffalo's Part in the World War 


EVENTFUL were the days immediately following the declaration of war, but not extraordi- 
narily exciting. The first real touch of interest came with the news that members of the 
Naval Militia stationed here had departed for the seaboard. The young mariners who 
formed the State Guard of Naval Militia had been mustered into the Federal service prior to the 
presentation of the war message to Congress. Early on the evening of April 7th, they left the 
armory of the 74th Regiment in Niagara Street and marched to the Lehigh station where they 
boarded a train for Philadelphia.* So quickly was it done, and so quietly, that very few people 
knew of the Naval Militia's journey until they were well on their way to the deck of some Ameri- 
can ship. The departure of that unit brought color to the cheeks of the Buffalo boys. And 
while not all cheeks glowed with the red blood of courage, most of them did. Some Buffalo boys, 
at least, had gone to war; othei-s who felt eager to take part in the struggle immediately applied 
for enlistment at the regimental headquarters. A small stream of young men had constantly 
flowed into the Canadian Army or into foreign ambulance service. That stream was now di- 
verted into the recruiting stations here. 

Two battalions of the 74th assembled on the 7th of April at the armory to prepare for patrol 
duty in guarding railroad bridges and other important points along the arteries of commerce. 
The first battalion, under the command of Major William R. Pooley, later Lieutenant Colonel 
of the regiment, was ordered to remain at the armory. That battalion included companies A, 
B, C, and D, Headquarters Company, the Supply Company and the Machine Gun Company, 
recently organized. (Sergeant Christopher Reddan, who really led the machine gun company 
through the foreign campaign, being cited for bravery, fell down stairs a few days after his return 
to Buffalo and was killed.) Company K of Tonawanda and Company E of Jamestown had 
already taken up patrol posts in difi'erent parts of the State. An urgent call to guard the electric 
plants at the Falls had been made, and by reason of the tremendous volume of power generated 
at that point extra precaution was immediately taken. Federal and municipal authorities knew 
that German propagandists were active, and a natural uneasiness as to the real extent of dis- 
affection and disloyalty was felt here. Many officials. Mayor Fuhrmann among them, expressed 
a disbelief that any disloyalty lurked in Buffalo, but they proceeded nevertheless on the theory 
that it is better to be safe than sorry, and acted accordingly. 

Commissioner Arthur W. Kreinheder at the head of the important city department of Public 
Works sent a communicationt to the Council on April 6th, the day war was declared, urging action 
looking to a further protection of the Water Works. 

Business interests of the city began to exhibit apprehension and on April r2th Mayor Fuhrmann 
asked Governor Whitman for State troops to guard local elevators. He had forgotten that the 
troops were no longer under the control of the State, but was reminded of that fact in a telegram | 
from Adjutant General Stotesbury on April 13th. 

♦There was little excitement last night at 8 o'clock in the Exchange street station as Buffalo's two divisions of the naval militia boarded a special 
train for Philadelphia from which point they will be sent to a port on the Atlantic where they will be assigned to one of Uncle Sam's warships 
for active service. No information was available as to where they are going, but it is known that they will be on warships within 24 hours after 
they reach their destination. 

Their departure was sudden. It was known for two days that they were going to leave, but the day for departure was generally thought to 
be Tuesday. Preparations had been completed swiftly and the militiamen were somewhat surprised when an order came from Washington late 
yesterday afternoon ordering them to leave in the evening. 

Their special train arrived in Philadelphia at 6 o'clock this morning. 

Soon after the order came Lieutenant Frank Maytham and Lieutenant Commander Arthur E. Brock had the men ready and all their equip- 
ment was sent on its way. 

The men were barely able to inform their parents and their relatives that they were about to leave. As the boys marched out of the Connecti- 
cut street armory they were given a great send-off by the members of the 74th Regiment and the hundreds of persons who were visiting the armory 
and the wives and sweethearts and friends of the militiamen. 

As the boys, most of whom are young, marched through the street small crowds gathered, for they were attracted by the tunes that were played 
by the militiamen's fife and drum corps. The march continued in Niagara street to Main street to Exchange street. 

This was a new experience for the naval militiamen. They did not go to the border when the infantrymen went, but their call this time is 
different than the call that infantrymen received. The naval militiamen are going to war. — (Local newspaper) 
1 1 See next page. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 63 

Upon receipt of that telegram, the Mayor immediately despatched a telegram^/ to the Com- 
mander at Governor's Island, again urging waterfront protection. 

The police guard around the elevators was increased and the elevator owners co-operated by 
the appointment of watchmen to assist the police in safeguarding these immense repositories of 
valuable foodstuffs. Fires in the elevators at Erie and at other points throughout the country 
added to the uneasiness here. It was not until near the close of April that the Mayor received 
word * * from the Government offering assistance in guarding these properties. On April 25th a 
letter from Adjutant General Wing at Governor's Island assured Buffalo officials that troops 
would be furnished. 



The unsettled condition of the times and the prevailing apprehension that through the efforts of public enemies or malicious and evil minded 
persons damage and loss may occur to the property of the city, especially the water works, urges me to lay before you this communication for 
your consideration. 

To minimize danger a special guard of police is now being maintained day and night over the water works property, and further precautions 
have been taken to thoroughly safeguard the very large investments of the city in this most important system. Upon consultation with many 
business men, I find that when large values are jeopardized, as a further precautionary measure these values are insured against loss by any of the 
causes mentioned. 

I therefore submit for the consideration of the Council the proposition that explosion insurance be placed upon the water works, and that the 
cost of such insurance, which will not be very great considering the protection afforded, be borne as a current expense by the bureau of water. 

It is not necessary to recite the terrible consequences which destruction of any vital or serious portion of the water works system would bring 
upon the people of the city of Buffalo. While we have the utmost confidence in the patriotism and loyalty of all our citizens, we believe that in 
the interest of public safety this department should be empowered to take all the precautionary measures necessary. 

1 am informed that other cities are protecting their public properties by insurance, and in view of the large values of our pumping station, I 
recommend that this department be authorized to procure the necessary insurance at once on the best terms and conditions obtainable. 

Respectfully submitted, 

Arthur W. Kreinheder. Commissioner 

(Copy of Telegram sent) JSTATE OF NEW YORK 

The Adjutant General's Office 
(26457) Albany 

Hon. Louis P. Fuhrmann, 

Mayor of Buffalo. Albany, N. Y., April 13th. 1917. 

Buffalo, N. Y. 
Reference your telegram all infantry National Guard organizations in western part of State are in Federal service. Have referred your tele- 
gram to the Commanding General Eastern Department and requested him to wire this office whether National Guard units in Federal service will 
be placed on duty for protection of elevator and milfing district of Buffalo. Suggest you wire Commanding General Eastern Department, Gov- 
ernor's Island, for adequate guard from troops in Federal service. 

Louis W. Stotesbury, 

The Adjutant General. 

SPosTAL Telegraph — Commercial Cables 


Buffalo, N. Y., April 14. 1917. 
To THE General Commanding Department of the East, U. S. Army, 
Governor's Island, New York Harbor 
Grain elevators at Buffalo, with a storage capacity of twenty-five million bushels of grain; flour and cereal mills with a daily output about 
twenty-five thousand barrels flour, and corresponding quantity of feed, feel that their property is in jeopardy unless given immediate military pro- 
tection. Two hundred million bushels of grain passed through this port last year, going very largely for export to the Allies. One hundred twenty- 
five million of this was Canadian grain — principally wheat. There are thirty millions of wheat headed to Buffalo now. merely awaiting breaking 
up of ice on lakes. I earnestly request that you detail at least a battalion of troops to protect these properties which are located almost entirely 
in one district on the waterfront^a narrow strip a little over two miles long. I have asked the New York State authorities for such protection 
and am informed that all State troops have been mustered into Federal service and that request should be addressed to you. Please act promptly. 
Shippers and owners of grain and grain products passing through this port are greatly exercised over lack of protection. 

L. P, Fuhrmann, Mayor. 

Governor's Island. New York City 
In reply refer to 370.21. Buffalo. N. Y. April 24th, 1917. 

Hon. Louis P. Fuhrmann, 

Mayor, Buffalo, N. Y. 
Dear Sir: 

Reference your telegram of April 14th, 1917. The Department Commander directs me to inform you that as soon as the 3rd New York In- 
fantry is mustered into the Federal service, the Commanding Officer of the 74th New York Infantry at Buffalo has been directed to furnish such 
troops as may be practicable to co-operate with your police force in the protection of the grain elevator district of Buffalo. 

These troops are furnished with the idea of co-operating with the civil authorities in protecting these districts, and it will not be practicable 
to furnish the necessary troops to entirely safeguard this district, but your local police should co-operate with these troops in keeping this portion 
of the city properly policed. While it is desired to furnish all the protection practicable for such utilities, he is unable with the number of troops 
available to protect all such places, and in furnishing such protection as he is able, he hopes that your department will co-operate in such manner 
as to make the protection adequate. 

Yours very truly, 

J. A. Wing, 

Adiuiani-General Adjutant. 

64 Buffalo's Part in the World War 




HE recruiting campaign in April was confined largely if not wholly to enlistments in the 
Regular Army and to filling the National Guard regiments to fighting strength. The fol- 
lowing telegram explains the army purposes of the Government at that time: 

Hon. Louis P. Fuhrmann, New York, N. Y., April 12, 1917. 

Mayor, Buffalo, N. Y.: 
Our telegram of April seventh, emphasized Navy's need. Understand Regular Army and National Guard to be filled if possible by Volunteers 
but creation larger force dependent upon Congressional legislation. Venture to suggest you now urge Navy enlistment. Hope by action your 
own city, and by telegrams to your Congressmen and Senators, you will emphasize danger relying upon volunteer system. Men needed in industry, 
agriculture, and to look after families may wish to enlist. Men who should enlist may prefer to stay home. Chaos will result. Universal train- 
ing service means every man will be assigned to duty for which best fitted. Service in factory or farm equally honorable with service with colors. 
Under volunteer system there will be stigma upon those who stay at home. We hope for your support for universal service. Our Committee is 
receiving strongest possible support from labor leader members. Suggest you include labor representatives on committees you may organize. 

Alexander J. Hemphill, 
CfiairmaUy Rerruith/g Committee of the Mayor's Committee on National Defense. 

Recruiting was brisk for a while but not exceptionally so. Captain Hamlin opened a recruiting 
station for the Third Artillery at Lafayette Square, and another at Shelton Square. Colonel 
Kemp, also, caused stations to be set up about the city to bring in recruits for the 74th. Marines 
and naval officers were likewise active in recruiting. Scenes around the monument at Lafayette 
Square at times grew most interesting and spectacular. Women joined in the work. Earnest 
appeals were made to those who congregated at that point to "join the colors." Captain Patrick 
J. Keeler, a judge of the City Court, was among the most enthusiastic officers of the Third Artil- 
lery in the effort to secure enlistments in his regiment. His speeches from the monument plat- 
form were intensely patriotic and forceful. No two men could have possibly spent more time and 
endeavor than did Captains Hamhn and Keeler in that recruiting campaign. Their labors were not 
so fully rewarded, perhaps, as they had hoped, or as the effort deserved, but they did bring many 
young men into khaki under the banner of the old 65th Regiment, then the Third Artillery. 

On April 24th the Military Training Camp Association opened an office in the White Building 
to receive applications for the officers' training camp at Madison Barracks. A number of guards- 
men were permitted to join the officers' camps, and through that source Buffalo furnished many 
officers to the Army. Later camps were established at Fort Niagara, and other points throughout 
the country. Many men who secured commissions at Madison Barracks, were sent to the regu- 
lars, and finally found their way into the First and Second Divisions in overseas service. 

While it may be possible that all eyes were turned toward the military operations at that 
moment, the rush of the young men of Buffalo was not wholly in the direction of the recruiting 
stations. Many rushed to the City Clerk's office for marriage licenses, through which they 
hoped to evade military service. The following article, appearing in the Buffalo Commercial on 
the "Yellow Peril" was written by Frank Gilchriese, City Hall reporter, and father of Captain 
Harry Gilchriese who gave valiant service throughout the war with the 106th Artillery in France. 

"Slackers Enter Here" 

"That was the sign that someone pasted over the doorway leading to the City Clerk's office and the marriage 
license bureau yesterday. That sign didn't appear to have any effect on the rush. All records at Cupid's Bower 
were smashed to smithereens by the onslaught of prospective brides and bridegrooms. The rush started immedi- 
ately after the City Clerk's office was opened for business, and at noon it hadn't abated a jot. City Clerk Sweeney 
had to detail practically all his employees to the job of making out licenses. There were fully fifty couples 
lined up for marriage licenses all the time, and they kept coming until the wonder was where they all came 

"A careful scrutiny of the lapels of the coats of the bridegrooms failed to disclose more than one per cent of Ameri- 
can colors — the colors that are being worn so profusely these days. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 65 

"'Do these men have to swear to support the Constitution and the flag?' asked a bystander of one of the City 
Clerk's men. 

" ' Won't they have enough to do to support their wives? ' was the retort. 

"Some of the couples that entered the hall noticed the big American flag that is suspended over the clerk's desk. 
But most of the couples saw nothing in that flag to attract them. They simply followed the rush. The sight was 
such an unusual one that city hall employees made a sort of Mecca of the City Clerk's office just to see the crowd. 

"At noon an attempt was made to get a count of the couples that secured licenses during the forenoon, but the 
rush and consequent confusion made this impossible. It was certain that more than 100 couples got licenses during 
the forenoon and that more than half of the men were of military age — between 18 and 25. 

"An officer of the Third Field Artillery called upon City Clerk Sweeney to ask if he could erect a recruiting station 
in the City Clerk's office. 

" 'By all means,' said Mr. Sweeney. 

"The officer said he would send a recruiting corps to the office during the afternoon. 

"'That might stop the rush,' said a tired-out employee." 

The following report in the Courier indicates that the recruiting officers did not overlook the 
opportunity to set up a recruiting station where the heroes (of matrimony) were the thickest: 

"At noon a sergeant and three privates of the .3d Artillery opened a recruiting office in the marriage license bureau. 
They were furnished with office room and other necessaries by City Clerk Sweeney. They posted the usual notices 
and prepared to do business, but the sergeant said he had little expectation for success at this time. 

"'Perhaps a few months from now some of these young fellows will be glad to join the army,' said a bystander." 

The efforts of the military men quickly turned the tide, however, and the number appearing 
for licenses gradually dwindled. The young women were the first to declare that they 
would not run the battery of gibes from those gathered around the corridors leading to the 
City Clerk's office, and a brighter and better and nobler color began to take the place of the 
yellow shade in the cheeks of the young men. Many of those who felt the impulse to evade 
service and who applied for licenses at that time were numbered later on with the boys who did 
their "bit" to the limit, and made the Supreme Sacrifice under their country's flag in a foreign 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 



PRESIDENT Wilson's war message to Congress, the patriotic fervor of the Elmwood Music 
Hall meeting, and the declaration of war itself served to set the blood of the people a-tingling 
and fill the city with martial airs. The month of April found bankers and merchants fling- 
ing the flag to the breeze. The practice quickly spread to the householders, if it did not originate 
there. Large industrial plants added something akin to a renewal of allegiance by surrounding 
the flag raising events with ceremony and song. In many of the plants, workmen purchased 
and raised the flags themselves. Commissioners Malone and Kreinheder, Mayor Fuhrmann and 
other city officials were much in demand as speakers at flag raising ceremonies. Though the 
practice began in April it lasted through the entire year and at times the number was so large it 
seemed as though the city would burst out in one great American flag with the entire population 
cheering. The daily papers were filled with accounts of these jubilees. 

The first flags raised with ceremony were at the Pierce-Arrow plant in Elmwood Avenue, and 
at the Niagara Street branch of the Curtiss plant. Peter A. Porter, a former member of Congress, 
and Colonel Charles Clifton were the speakers at the first named ceremonial, while Mayor Fuhr- 
mann delivered an address of patriotic character at the Curtiss plant. The following day, "Old 
Glory" was unfolded at the New York Central stockyards in East Bufi'alo, with Alfred D. Sears 
as master of ceremonies and Edward L. Jung as the speaker. A squad of fifteen members of the 
74th Regiment participated in the observances and fired a salute to the flag. Then the Post- 
office employees raised an immense banner, the speakers being Robert Eichel, superintendent 
of mails; David 0. Trainer, head of the Clerks' Association, and Thomas F. Kennedy, president 

Hon. Charles M. Heald Addressing Crowd at Patriotic Meeting 

68 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

of the Letter Carriers' Association. On that occasion Postmaster George J. Meyer announced 
that he would give his entire salary of $6,000 a year to war relief funds. Captain Patrick J. 
Keeler and Lieutenant D. P. Wickersham, naval recruiting officer, were the speakers at Lafayette 
Square when the boys of the recruiting station had a "flag raising" early in April. Fully 1,000 
men massed themselves at the Cyphers Incubator plant in Dewey Avenue for a similar purpose. 
The men poured in from the adjoining plants. The gathering was probably the largest at any 
flag raising ceremony held during the month of April. Arthur W. Kreinheder, Commissioner of 
Public Works, was the speaker. In many of the churches patriotic sermons were delivered. On 
Sunday following the declaration of war Rev. Robert J. MacAlpine of the Central Park Presby- 
terian Church and the Rev. Thomas J. O'Hern, a Catholic missionary, were leaders in the pulpit 
appeal to patriotism. On the following Saturday and Sunday war sermons were preached by 
the Rev. Louis J. Kopald of Temple Beth Zion, Rev. Carl D. Case of the Delaware Avenue Baptist 
Church, Rev. Richard Wilson Boynton of the First Unitarian Church, Rev. John T. Cowan of 
the Prospect Avenue Baptist Church, Rev. William J. Kirwin, 0. M. I. of Holy Angels Church, 
Rev. William S. Mitchell of Plymouth Methodist Episcopal, Rev. Thomas J. Walsh, later Bishop 
of Trenton, X. .J., then rector of St. Joseph's Old Cathedral, Rev. L. 0. Williams, First Univer- 
salist Church of the Messiah, and Rev. George F. Williams of St. Mary's on the Hill, who later 
became Captain Williams of the United States Army — a chaplain. 

Men were naturally turning to the armories, to the recruiting stations and to Congress for 
information as to the next step. War had been declared, yet no one understood definitely how 
we were to make war. Food was necessary; that was apparent. Ships had to be built; that, 
also, we realized to be an essential duty of the nation. The Navy could use men, mariners would 
be required in manning the ships to carry supplies and ammunition. It appeared to be conceded 
we would, in compliance with our military and naval duty, simply fill up the local regiments and 
aid in Navy enlistments. 

Discussion grew at Washington as to whether or not we would send an army overseas, and the 
arrival of envoys from England and France to discuss the form our aid should take, soon made 
it certain that men would be needed for war service on foreign soil. The man-power of both 
France and England had been materially weakened, and the morale of their troops was none too 

Offers to raise volunteer regiments poured in to Washington. President Wilson and other 
officials at the head of the War Department were strongly set against the volunteer system, and, 
at an early date in April, caused a bill providing for selective enrollment to be introduced in both 
houses of Congress. The measure was discussed at length in the House Military Committee, 
and, on April 18th, the committee, by a vote of twelve to eight, decided to have the army bill 
carry a provision committing the Government to an attempt to raise the new force by volunteers 
before taking other steps. At the same time the Senate Committee, by a vote of ten to seven, 
decided in favor of conscription. The action of the House was virtually a declaration for the 
volunteer system to raise 500,000 men, the number it was generally believed would be needed. 
The provision which the House Committee agreed upon was as follows: 

■'That the President be and he is hereby authorized to call for 500,000 volunteers under and in accordance with 
the act of Congress approved April 25, 1914 (the army reorganization act) * * * That in the event it becomes neces- 
sary to raise an additional force of 500,000 men * * the President be, and he is hereby authorized to call such addi- 
tional force by volunteers in the same manner, such volunteer army shall be apportioned among the various States 
and Territories and the District of Columbia, according to population, raised in regiments' units or parts thereof * * * 
Provided that such volunteer forces shall be recruited in local units as far as practicable and company officers may 
be appointed from such units upon passing such reasonable and practical e.xaminations as to fitness as the President 
may direct. 

"And provided further, that upon the completion of the enrollment as provided in this act and in the event the 
President decides that such additional force or forces cannot be effectually raised and maintained under the call for 
volunteers as herein provided, the President be and he is hereby authorized to raise and organize the same by the 
selective draft as herein provided." 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 69 

The foregoing resolution voiced the trend of thought of a great many people. The volunteer 
system was looked upon as the more manly and patriotic way to go to war, while the draft was 
viewed in many quarters as a somewhat degrading system of raising an army. It was stated 
that riots and disorder would follow any attempt to draft men. Washington reports, while indi- 
cating that men were needed on the farms and in the industries more than in the military branch, 
still continued to carry assurance that eventually whatever military service would be required 
of the young men would be determined by a selective draft system. In Buffalo people generally 
felt assured that our part in the struggle would be confined wholly to sending supplies. In fact, 
the utterances of all authorities tended to confirm that opinion. The Buffalo Commercial in that 
day was a conservative newspaper. Politically it was opposed to the President but it strongly 
advocated support of the President's war policy and the adoption of the selective service system.* 
The other Buffalo newspapers were likewise earnestly behind the President, but not all were 
entirely convinced that the volunteer method should be discarded. 

Comment on the editorial pages of the papers even at that late day in April shows how little 
the people then thought of our actual participation with an armed force on foreign soil. They 
did not realize that their government was quietly shaping the machinery at that moment to raise 
the army which in one year and a half from that date would halt and then destroy the German 
military machine. 

♦"As the days pass since war was declared against Germany the part that the United States is to play in the great world struggle for supremacy 
becomes more clearly and definitely pronounced. We now realize that America's duty is not primarily to send men to the fighting line either on 
sea or land, but in supplying the nations already in the fight with the things they stand in need of. It is not for us to carry the gun but to work 
behind the gunners. We are to be connected with the quartermaster's department. It is an humble part and one that will not bring great mili- 
tary glory, but it is just as essential to the winning of this war as the work General Haig's forces are doing to-day on the blood-soaked slopes of 
Vimy Ridge. 

"When war was threatened between Germany and our country the German newspapers ridiculed the idea of the United States contributmg 
in any way to the cause of the Allies more than it was already doing. They declared that Americans had already done all they could do to help 
the Entente by sending them ammunition and other supplies. Little did they count upon the e.xpansive resources of this nation. Little did they 
dream that what we had done for gold was but a moiety of what we could and would do under the stimulus of patriotism; that the streams of 
supplies which have been flowing into Great Britain. France, Russia and Italy are rivulets indeed when compared to the great torrents that will be 
poured into the lap of the Allies when the industrial forces of the nation are once fairly mobilized and 100,000,000 men, women and children, more 
or less, have found their places and have begun to 'do their bit.' 

"The United States is to be the great supply depot of the allied powers. It will be at once the granary of the Entente armies and the civilian 
populations behind them, the arsenal of the troops fighting in the cause of democracy and the great shipyard of the world, building vessels in such 
immense quantities that Germany with all the destructive power of her submarines cannot sink them as fast as they will be turned out. Food, 
munitions, clothing and footwearfor soldiers and non-combatants will soon pour into the commercial marts of the Allies in such increasing quan- 
tities as to blast forever the hopes of the Central empires bringing the war to an end through the exhaustion of their enemies. 

"This is the theme of the President's address to the country published in the newspapers to-day: We must take the place of the men who have 
gone to the front and raise or make things that they are unable to produce or manufacture by reason of a shortage of men, material and machinery." 
— Buffalo ComincTcial, .\pril 16, 1917. 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 


ON Saturday, April 28th, 1917, Mayor Fuhrmann received notice through official channels 
of the form BufTalo's essential military participation in the World War then raging in 
Europe would take. The notice amved fully three weeks prior to the date on which Con- 
gress passed the act which subsequently became known as the Selective Service Law. It con- 
veyed information to the head of the city government that the Federal authorities had deter- 
mined to raise a National army from the youths of the country by the selective service 

^'resident and Mrs. Wilson visit Buflfaln 

First Lady of the Land alighting from automobile on occasion of President's visit to Buffalo for the big labor conference 

Mayor Fuhrmann had followed closely the affairs at Washington and at the capitals of the 
belligerent nations of Europe and he was closer to a complete realization of the nearness of war 
to Buffalo homes than most of the war students of Buffalo at that time. But the message he 
received that evening came to him as a real awakening. It did, also, to the others who read it. 
Like almost everyone else he had pictured in his mind's eye the National Guard called to war; 
he had pictured a call for volunteers, and, then, if more men were needed for America's part — 
a draft. Up to that hour, however, the Federal Government's plan of procedure had not been 
announced to anyone in Buffalo, and the President and his advisers were at that moment deeply 
concerned over the wisdom of their course and waited with apprehension, groundless as it happily 
proved to be, the reception of the plan by the people. 

The communication announcing the draft was forwarded to Mayor Fuhrmann by Brigadier 
General Louis W. Stotesbury, Adjutant General of the State of New York, and was marked, 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 71 

** Personal and Confidential/' A messenger from the Mayor's office carried it to the Mayor at 
Police Headquarters, where he had called for a conference with Chief Martin. 

At that time, and for some weeks prior thereto, the police authorities were conducting an ex- 
tensive investigation, in a secret way, to determine the extent of pro-German propaganda dif- 
fused here, and to detect any conspiracies which might be afoot for the destruction of industries 
or storage plants or the like. Explosions and fires, in which great quantities of war material and 
foodstuffs had been destroyed, had been reported from various sections of the country, and the 
Mayor and Chief of Police were extremely anxious to avoid a disaster of that sort in Buffalo. 

Police Headquarters was then on a small rectangular plot of ground at the intersection of 
Seneca, Franklin and Erie Streets, and the Upper Terrace. It faced Franklin Street, but its rear 
windows abutted on the New York Central's Belt Line tracks, and volumes of dense black smoke 
enclouded — almost engulfed— the building at regular intervals during the day and night while the 
ponderous engines rocked and shook the old structure as they climbed up the grade to the Terrace 
Station. The day of the electrification of railroad lines within the city limits had long been prom- 
ised but had not yet arrived. Within the walls of that old building Buffalo officially entered the war. 

Upon the arrival of the City Clerk at the Chief's office in answer to a telephone call, the Mayor 
handed him a letter,* the one he had just received from Albany, beingacondensedoutlineof thedraft 
in conformity with a letter sent to the Governors of all the States of the Union on April 23, 1917. 
The plan of registration as outlined in that letter found no deviation in its execution, and though 
thousands of men were engaged in the task and 70,000 registrations were effected in this County, 
the machinery was never for a moment retarded, nor stopped, until the task was completed. 

Confidential and Personal The Adjutant General's Office 

From; The Adjutant General Albany April 26th, 1917. 

To: Mayor L. P. Fuhrmann. Buffalo. N. Y. 

Subject: Registration of Persons for Federal Draft. 

1. The Governor has received information through the Secretary of War, that the Act now pending in Congress providing for the raising of 
additional Army troops, is assured of passage this week and will have the immediate approval of the President. 

2. The Act provides for the raising of the Army by selective draft, and as the basis for such action the President proposes, immediately upon 
the approval of the Act, to issue a Proclamation requiring all persons of the designated classes or ages, to present themselves for registration 
on a certain day, at the customary polling places in their voting precincts or districts. 

3. The War Department has called upon the Governor of each State to become responsible for such registration within the State, and has 
directed that registration boards be constituted in each county, consisting of the Sheriff, County Clerk and the county physician or health officer 
and that similar boards be constituted in cities of over 30.000 inhabitants, consisting of the Mayor, the City Clerk and the City Health Officer 
or head of the local health department. That this board, in cities, shall be known as the City Board of Control, and will act as a supervisory 
board for the entire city. Boards similar to the County Board should be constituted for one or more wards, to supervise the registration in indi- 
cated precincts and to further execute the law, and the various ward boards should function under the central City Board of Control. 

4. You. as Mayor, will be the executive officer of the Registration Board of the city. The City Clerk will be the custodian of its records. 
The medical officer on each ward board would later pass upon the physical fitness of those selected for service. 

5. The election district will be the unit of registration. There must be provided in each election district a registration depot, and for each 
depot there would be appointed by the ward board or by your board, as you may determine, at least one registrar and a sufficient number of clerks 
to take care of the registration within the district. 

6. The important duty of making the selection from the drafted class would be made in the city by the Ward Board, and should be consti- 
tuted of citizens who can be relied upon to exercise this solemn function with even justice and with appreciation of its gravity. 

7. It is left to you, as Mayor of the city, to appoint the Ward Boards. The Governor will appoint the County Boards and the general Super- 
vising Boards of the city. You as executive officer of the City Board will appoint and designate the Ward Boards, either a special Board for each 
ward or one Board to cover several wards. There should be a physician on each Board. 

8. According to the information received from the Secretary of War, the Proclamation will call for the registration, on a certain day within 
ten days of the date of the Proclamation, and all of the men of the designated classes will be required to appear at the registration depots on that 
day, and all the work of the registration is to be accomplished on that day. You will readily appreciate, therefore, the necessity of having all 
the machinery prepared in advance, and for that reason we are giving you this information even before the Proclamation is issued, so that you can 
immediately, informally organize the Board. 

9. Immediate steps should be taken to secure the polling places in each district as registration depots. At least one registrar should be 
appointed for each registration depot, and a sufficient number of clerks. Every preliminary arrangement should be made to take official action 
immediately upon the receipt of notice or publication of the President's Proclamation. 

10. The War Department is to provide the forms and instructions for the registration, which will be sent direct from Washington to you as 
executive head of the Board, for distribution within your city. Further information will be sent to you as soon as it is received from Washington. 

11. Undoubtedly, a question which will require prompt solution is that of the expense of carrying out this governmental undertaking. The 
Act referred to gives the President full power to call upon State and Federal officials to perform such duties as the President may direct. How- 
ever, in communicating the plan to the Governor, the Secretary of War stated: 

"It would be gratifying also to think that the services required of members of these boards would be offered without hope of 
compensation, but it is borne in mind that the duties imposed upon them will be exacting, difficult, and frequently distressing. 
If compensation is necessary, the Government stands ready to make it. Where any service in connection herewith is rendered 
gratuitously the Government will be prompt to express its appreciation." 

12. While this refers to the service of the Board, it is not clear that it was intended to include the services of registrars and clerks. If it is 
possible for you to obtain volunteers for such purpose, that would seem to be the intention of the Secretary. Otherwise, if there is to be expense, 
either for service or for hire of suitable quarters, you must immediately prepare a budget and wire in the expense, so that it can be submitted to 
the War Department for approval, but we urge you most earnestly to let no consideration of that sort delay or prevent prompt and complete 
action as indicated, for the Governor has given his assurance that the State of New York will, to the fullest extent, co-operate in this undertaking, 
and that every officer, state, county or municipal, as well as each citizen, will do his or her part in the work. 

13. In view of the confidential character of the communication from the Secretary of War, the action taken must be, as far as possible, with- 
out publicity, but it is understood, of course, that the official nature of the request must be communicated to your associates and those who are 
to be persuaded to do the work; but your action must, to a certain extent, be preparatory and tentative until the Act itself is signed and the 
Proclamation itself is actually issued. 

14. Please to at once acknowledge the receipt of this communication and give your assurance as to the necessary action. 

Louis W. Stotesbury, 

The Adjutant General. 


Buffalo's Pakt in the World War 


IN the light of subsequent events the notice and information that letter contained grew dim and 
uninteresting. Time quickly swallowed it up. To the little group in that police office, how- 
ever, it was momentous. It carried a stern message of impending sacrifice. Buffalo 
was unconscious of war's presence. No part of the United States was different. Here and there 
throughout the city scattered contingents of citizens had for months, as we know, solemnly urged 
preparation for war, and their pleas fell on willing, but joyous, unconcerned and unimpressed 
ears. To most Buffalonians the war was an inconceivable number of miles away. To those 
who received the first order of preparation it was close at hand. Chief Martin, always military 
in his carriage and austere in demeanor, seemed to suddenly grow more cold and erect as he read 
that letter. Mayor Fuhrmann, jovial and even-tempered always, evidenced in his conversation 
and manner how deeply the notice had impressed him. 

"Well, it's here. Let's go to it," were the words he used in concluding the discussion, adding, 
"Buffalo — this Nation — is in the war and we have some dark times ahead, but I presume it is the 
only way to end that struggle over there." 

It was determined that the City Clerk should map out a plan and quietly perfect an organiza- 
tion to carry through the registration contemplated in the legislation then before Congress. The 
Mayor expressed his intention to give all his time to the consideration of matters concerning 
Buffalo's participation in the war — a determination to which he adhered unswervingly through- 
out his term as a public official. And it must be recorded that he played no small part in assisting 
the Federal Government in the co-ordination of the forces of the Nation, and in putting Buffalo 

Mayor Fuhrmann at Station Saying Good-By to Artillerymen 

Buffalo's Pakt in the World War 73 

patriotically to the front. Some cities hesitated in their war work. Some Mayors faltered and 
failed. Buffalo unfurled the flag early and kept going stronger as the Nation's calls increased. 

Mayor Fuhrmann was comparatively a young man at that time, scarcely more than 45 years 
of age. He had then held the office of Mayor for upwards of six years, having emerged from two 
bitterly contested campaigns to succeeding victories. The fierce nature of his political struggles 
did not embitter him, however, and he always greeted folks everywhere in the same character- 
istically good-natured, smiling, affable manner. 

At an early age, Louis Fuhrmann wa.- a butcher boy, not such as carried steaks or roasts from 
the shop to one's home, but as a worker in the abattoirs; later as a manager of the western branch 
of the big Dold Packing Company, in Kansas City, and, finally, returning to Buffalo, he entered 
into the business for himself. His education was obtained by hard knocks, and his only degrees 
were those the College of the Wide World gives. But he was keen and fearless. He had courage! 
Oh, he had courage! Too much, perhaps. Right or wrong he could, without fear or flinching, 
face them all — newspapers, individuals, political organizations, social and business societies. 
He was as loyal to his friends as a flower to its stalk; a strong believer in party, and yet forever 
on the outs with his party organization; intensely partisan, yet constantly putting personal 
friendships above party considerations. He came into politics as an alderman in the old Sixth 
Ward — against his wishes — and with great diffidence, almost timidity, approached his duties 
there. But in less than three years, he had grown to be a leader in the Council. Another whirl 
of the political wheel found him, in 1909, his party's candidate for Mayor, to which office he was 
then elected, and he was re-elected in 1913. When, in 1914, the war broke out he was serving the 
first year of his second term, and, at that period was well versed in the affairs of government. 
He had grown exceptionally popular with the people, a popularity which clung to him for the 
greater part of his second period as Mayor, but which waned rapidly towards the end of his term. 
His intense patriotism nevertheless never waned, and, indeed, earnest and sincere and effective 
was the service he rendered in the solution of the innumerable problems which the war brought 
to Buffalo. The high resolve he made in Chief Martin's office that April night to devote his 
every effort to winning the war became in the following months a beacon of patriotic dedication 
towai'd which he ever turned. 

That in brief is a description of the then Mayor of Buffalo. It does not appear entirely ade- 
quate, but it will convey an idea of the manner of man who held the reins of government at that 
eventful period. He had his faults and weaknesses! He was not an ideal executive. Did any 
city ever have one? He inherited nothing from Demosthenes, but was concise and forceful in 
his remarks. Attractive in appearance, he was chock full of good humor and kindness. He was 
a regular fellow, a man's man; prone to fight the reform forces in the community, and given over 
to liberality in all things. He would quickly check lawlessness, but as quickly give leave to 
the exercise of all those virtues and near-vices which, for the want of a more descriptive term, 
might reasonably be assembled under the title of individual liberties. It is not of record that 
he ever marched in a reform procession, and he fairly and justly earned the opposition of civic 
leagues, city crusaders and such like organizations. If any one of a dozen men were picked at 
random and asked to name Mayor Fuhrmann's chief characteristics, the immediate, unhesi- 
tating reply would be "His cordiality and his courage." Both of those qualities were put to a 
severe test in the war months of his term which followed. 

74 Buffalo's Part in the World War 




ON April 27th work was started in Buffalo on the rc<ristration plans, and that work was un- 
ceasing and intensive until the plans were finally arranged and the registration consum- 
mated. Primarily, the committee in charge found the need of an army of some 2,000 
. volunteer registrars. They were recruited from the election officers and party committeemen 
of the two major parties. General and district committeemen, inspectors of election and poll 
clerks, without exception, volunteered their services for registration day without cost to the 
Government or to the city. Many citizens in each election district, likewise, tendered themselves 
gratuitously for the work. Governor Whitman, on May 10th, announced the appointment of 
the members of the registration boards. Those officials, up to the time their designation was 
officially declared, were observing the government request not to make the conscription plans 
known. But a short time thereafter, when it became apparent a sufficient number of votes had 
been pledged in Congress to secure the enactment of the selective service act, Washington author- 
ities asked the registration boards to enlist the assistance of local newspapers in disseminating 
information regarding the draft. In that work the newspapers rendered valuable assistance. 
Return postal cards had been mailed to prospective registrars, and a substantial list of volunteers 
for each of the 200 districts of the city and the 75 districts of the towns of the county outside of 
Buffalo had been obtained before the selective service act finally passed both houses of Congress. 
The measure received the President's signature on May 16th, the day of its passage in the House. 
Excitement and jubilation everywhere followed. In churches and clubs, at flag ceremonies 
and civic dinners, in speech and song and cheers, the spirit of an aroused patriotism made 
itself felt. 

In his proclamation the President called on all male citizens of the United States between the 
ages of 21 and 31, except officers and enlisted men of the Army, Navy, and Marines and those 
in the Regular Army reserve officers' corps and various other military and naval reserve organiza- 
tions, to register in their home precincts on .June 5th. It was provided that the registration 
booths should be open between the hours of 7 A. M. and 9 P. M. on that day. Provision was 
made for the enrollment of those who were sick, and necessary steps were taken to register in- 
mates of jails, penitentiaries and insane asylums; in fact, no male of the announced military age 
was overlooked, no matter what might be the condition of his health or his social standing, 
the width or the restriction of his liberty. The President further provided that those 
who were absent from their home precincts on the fifth day of June might present them- 
selves to the city or town clerk of any city or town and fill out a registration card, the card 
to be forwarded to the city clerk or county clerk of the city or county in which the regis- 
trant claimed permanent abode. These cards were to be forwarded at a time which would 
provide for the receipt of the same at the registrant's home district prior to June 5th, and 
the office of the City Clerk, by reason of those registrations, became a beehive of activity 
for a ten-day period preceding. 

Throughout that period the members of the registration boards in the city and county and their 
clerical assistants worked day and night. 

Henry J. Collins, a clerk in the Sheriff's office, served as clerk of the County Board. 

An allotment of 50,000 registration cards was sent to Buffalo, and another of about 15,000 to 
the County Board. The estimate of the statisticians in Washington placed the probable regis- 
tration for Buffalo at 40,000. In addition, 10,000 cards were furnished for registrations prior to 
June 5th. For the purpose of systematically reaching the registrars, the 2,000 volunteers in the 
city were divided into groups within police precincts. In the County the Supervisors carried 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 75 

out the work of organization. Full instructions had been received by telegraph* as to the quali- 
fications of the men to be chosen as registrars, and it had been determined to employ men at a 
per diem rate if a sufficient number of suitable volunteers could not be obtained. In all the army 
of 2,000 men in the city, and at least 500 in the towns, who finally performed the work no one 
would accept financial recompense for his services. 

Under a program arranged by the City Board of Registration the registrars were invited by 
the Mayor to meet at the precinct station nearest their respective homes at a time indicated in 
a letterf sent to each one by the Mayor. They were met at the appointed time and places by 
deputies from the City Clerk's office, who became known as the flying squad. That squad was 
made up of exceptionally efficient men, including James Mockler and John Riley, warrant clerks 
in the City Clerk's Department; Thomas Lawley, member of the Erie County Board of Super- 
visors; Frank Love, agent for a brick manufacturing concern, and Edward Ryan, a real estate 
salesman. The vast amount of clerical work in preparing and issuing identification cards for the 
registrars, securing their signatures to oath blanks, making the necessary record of their respec- 
tive booth assignments and distributing printed pamphlets of instructions, was handled by that 
squad. The members of the Registration Board, accompanied by Chief of Police Martin, fol- 
lowed the clerical force from station house to station house. The oflficials arrived about the 
time the clerks left. Thorough instruction was given to the prospective registrars by City Clerk 
Sweeney, and Mayor Fuhrmann then administered the oath of office to the hundreds of men 
present and impressed upon them in a short address,! the responsibility they were taking and their 
obligation in the work they had so generously volunteered to perform. Two, and sometimes 
three, stations were covered in a night, and the course was continued until every one of the 2,000 
volunteers had received full information concerning a task which, naturally was new to everyone. 

In the light of after events, recalling the remarkable record made by Buffalo — the first city 
in the State to hand in its completed returns — the work of instruction and of organization, and 
the co-operation obtained, made possible the words of praise which Governor Whitman and 
others later bestowed upon Buffalo for its efficiency in the labors of registration. 


The Adjutant General's Office 
From: The Adjutant General. May 14th, 1917. 

To: Hon. Louis P. Fuhrmann, Buffalo, N. Y. 

Subject; Registration of Persons for Federal Draft. 

1. The attention of all local boards of registration is invited to the following extracts from the revised Regulations of the Bureau of the Pro- 
vost Marshal General relative to registrars, a complete copy of which will be sent you as soon as available: 

"Registrars must be competent clerks, whose handwriting is neat and legible. 

"Registrars shall be selected with regard to their qualifications for the duties prescribed herein. 

"Registrars should be residents of the precincts for which they are appointed, and they should be persons who have lived long enough in those 
precincts to be well acquainted with the inhabitants thereof. 

"Registrars must be citizens of the United States or persons (not alien enemies) who have declared their intention to become citizens of the 
United States." 

2. Certain sheriffs have also called attention to the difficulty in complying with the provisions of the regulations that the registration cards 
must be delivered by the Chief Registrar to the Executive Officer of the Registration Board. This matter has been submitted to Washington 
for the decision of the Provost Marshal General, by this office, and the ruling has been made that the regulations must be strictly followed. 

(Signed) Louis W. Stotesbury, 

Adjidaiil GeneTal. 
Mayor's Office 
Louis P. Fuhrmann, Mayor Buffalo, May 21st, 1917. 

My Dear Sir: 

The Government requires that all those who are to serve as registrars in the various polling places of the city on June 5th in connection with 
the Federal registration shall take an oath of office to support the Constitution of the United States and faithfully perform, on that day, such 
duties as may fall to them. 

I have set May 26th, 8.00 P. M., at No, 8 Police Station, Fillmore Avenue, as the time and place for administering this oath. No one can 
serve his country in this registration work unless he has taken the oath of office. Knowing your willingness and desire to serve, I respectfully 
urge that you be present on time at the PLACE ABOVE mentioned, when full instructions for the work will be given you. 

I wish to thank you at this time for the generous spirit you have shown in volunteering your services for the taking of this registration. I am 
advised by the President of the United States that he desires the names of all those who take the oath and perform the duties of registrar in order 
that the government may express its appreciation of your service. And at a later date, in a formal and public way, as Mayor of the city, I hope 
to convey to you a just estimate of the city's indebtedness to you, and give expression to my personal gratitude, for the services you are so gen- 
erously and patriotically to render. 

With assurances of my kindest personal regards, believe me Very cordially yours, 

L. P. Fuhrmann, Maym. 

In expressing to you for the City of Buffalo my appreciation of the patriotic spirit which inspires you to take this solemn obligation upon your- 
selves may I say that in due course you will also receive an acknowledgment of commendation from the President of the United States for your 
loyalty in performing this service to our country in this hour of great national need. 

I have no word, and no man has, that can adequately portray the importance of the duty devolving upon you in gathering the names of the 
oung men between the ages of 21 and 30 for the selective draft on the .5th of June. Certainly this responsible duty is far-reaching in its scope, 
and upon its faithful and complete performance depends our military success subsequent to the draft. 

76 Buffalo's Part in the World War 


WHILE the organization for June 5tii was in progress, the actual work of registering thou- 
sands of non-residents was going on night and day at the City Hall. Many extra clerks 
were employed to meet the rush. It was all a new idea with workers and registrants alike. 
And it was a good-natured throng which daily and nightly filled that office. The spacious room 
often rang with hearty laughter over some of the answers given by registrants. 

A diminutive Italian, Tony Monanco by name, water boy by occupation, presented himself at 
the office early one morning. 

A clerk at the desk, his eyes still clouded — their hours of rest were not long in those days — not 
recognizing the young man as a possible registrant said : 

"What can I do for you?" 

"Ma name Tony Monanco. In dees countra seex months. Gimme da gun." 

Had Tony descended from a passenger on the good ship Mayflower he could scarcely have 
been more intensely American. He exemplified the spirit which was found in all classes, even 
those who had not reached the initial point on the road to American citizenship. 

Not all at first blush, however, were able to see their duty. An example of that class was 
presented by a grocery boy who had driven to the City Hall in his employer's wagon. He had 
answered all the questions until the clerk asked him if he desired to claim exemption from the 

"What's that?" he queried. 

" Is there any reason why you shouldn't go to war in case you are called by Uncle Sam?" said 
the clerk. 

"Who th' h — 1 would drive the horse?" was the somewhat apprehensive answer. 

The clerk expressed the belief that the young man would probably have to ask the captain of 
his company about that. 

A photographer wrote to the City Clerk advising him that he would be busy with June weddings 
on June 5th and that some other day would have to be set for the registration as he positively 
could not appear on June 5th. 

The conscientious objector usually claimed exemption by saying: "I am against legalized 
murder in any form. If the United States wishes to carry on war, let it do so with men who 
believe in fighting, I do not." 

The task of registering the vast number who appeared in the days immediately preceding 
June 5th was not an easy one, and, on several occasions, faithful clerks toppled over at their 
desks from exhaustion. Those were wonderful days about the City Hall. Not only registrants, 
but spectators, crowded the corridors of the big building, every one interested in the work that 
was going on, all realizing that a strange reversal had come over America's dream of unending 
peace and absolute aloofness from foreign affairs. It was a new atmosphere. The people in 
the corridors seemed to have hopped right out of some book of ancient history when nations and 
tribesmen, forgetting all else, concentrated their forces for war. 

The even-tempered course we had followed for years had ended. Yesterday was gone forever. 
As the registration work advanced it grew more systematic and was more efficiently handled. 
On May 15th both the city and county boards reported to Albany they had completed all ari-ange- 
ments. Their report was in the hands of the officials at Washington before the draft law was 
passed in Congress. On May 18th the President issued the proclamation designating June 5th 
as registi-ation day. Major Turgeon and his aides. Mayor Fuhrmann and the other members 
of the Registration Board held frequent meetings, but, for the most part, the immense organiza- 
tion formed for the registration task simply marked time until the coming of June 5th. School 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 


Scene at a Buffalo Playground 

School children reflect in their exercises the predominant sentiment of the hour 

teachers and school principals volunteered for service with the registration boards to assist wher- 
ever they were needed. Rural mail carriers tendered their services to Chairman Stengel for work 
in the towns and gave valuable aid in perfecting the town registration. Erie County, from 
center to circumference plainly showed at that period its zeal and its fervor. 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 


IN the days intervening between June 1st and 5th, churches, societies, clubs and like organiza- 
tions sounded a patriotic call from pulpit and banquet board. Class, creed and color rapidly 
lost distinction. In those days, from early morn until late we saw only, alone, above every- 
thing else, a mass of stars, in a field of blue with flaming red and white stripes. Speakers of the 
hour painted the picture of a thoroughly united America. An illuminating schoolhouse incident 
of that June day tells the whole story : 

At a meeting of the school children, one boy, a descendant of native Americans, spoke as 

"I am an American. My father belongs to the Sons of the Revolution: my mother belongs to the Colonial Dames. One of my ancestors 
pitched tea overboard in Boston Harbor: another stood his ground with Warren: another hungered with Washington at Valley Forge. My fore- 
fathers were American in the making: they spoke in America's council halls: they died on her battlefields: they commanded her ships: they cleared 
her forests. Dawns reddened and paled. Staunch hearts of mine beat fast at each new star in the Nation's flag. Keen eyes of mine foresaw 
her greater glory: the sweep of her seas, the plenty of her plains, the man-hives in her billion-wired cities. Every drop of blood in me holds a her- 
itage of patriotism. I am proud of my past. I am an American." 

Then a foreign-born boy arose and said : 

"I am an .'imerican. My father was an atom of dust: my mother was a straw in the wind to His Serene Majesty. One of my ancestors 
died in the mines of Siberia: another was crippled for life by twenty blows of the knout: another was killed defending his home during the mas- 
sacres. The history of my ancestors is a trail of blood to the palace gate of the Great White Czar. But then the dream came — the dream of 
.America. In the light of Liberty's torch the atom of dust became a man and the straw in the wind became a woman for the first time. ' See,' said 
my father, pointing to the flag that fluttered near, 'That flag of stars and stripes is yours: it is the emblem of the promised land. It means, 
my son, the hope of humanity. Live for it, die for it'. Under the open sky of my new country I swore to do so: and every drop of blood in me 
will keep that vow. I am proud of my future. I am an American." 

Flag-raising fever ran riot in those days and every factory and shop, every railroad and 
steamboat line, every club and church and society had its flag and its flag unfolding cere- 

I Am All American 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 


Scene at Police Headquarters Registering Alien Enemies Under Supervision of Government Authorities 

mony. In every Episcopalian church throughout the diocese of Western New York, a 
prayer* was read on Sunday, June 3d, containing an appeal to the Almighty Ruler of men that 
the youth of the Nation might clearly see its duty and unhesitatingly make the sacrifices it was 
about to be called upon to make. 

At the 25th annual reunion banquet of Buffalo Consistory, Scottish Rite Masons, held a few 
days prior to registration day, Commander George K. Staples, as toastmaster, dispatched a tele- 
gram to President Wilson, saying: 

"Scottish Rite Masons of Buffalo Consistory in annual convention here assembled, pledge to their country, its 
flag and its President their unswerving support and loyalty." 

The toil of the preparedness workers was now bearing fruit. From store and shop and the 
professions men and women, boys and girls, poured out, aglow with enthusiasm and the spirit of 

*"Almighty God, Who by thine indwelling Presence didst enable our fathers to conceive a nation founded in liberty, and didst give them 
strength to toil and suffer and die that democracy might live, we thank Thee for the glorious example of their courage and steadfastness and for 
the witness they bore to Thy Truth. And we pray Thee to grant to us their sons such a clearness of vision, such loyalty to Thee that we may 
never be false to our heritage but may nurture it with our whole hearted toil and ungrudging sacrifice. We pray especially for the youth of our 
country, that they may at this time especially recognize the privilege of serving the ideal, and with glad hearts and noble courage may offer 
themselves in this hour of their nation's need. And to us all grant such a measure of Thy grace that giving ourselves and our substance without 
stint, we in our generation may fulfill Thy will in the establishment of justice and brotherhool upon the earth forever. We ask it all in the 
name of Him who died for thetruth, Thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen." 

80 Buffalo's Part in the World War 



JUNE 5th, 1917, came and went, like all June 5ths prior thereto, but on that particu- 
lar June 5th the Nation heard the heartbeat of patriotism as never before. From 
the first blush of day until a tired organization, late at night, filed its final reports in the 
City Clerk's office at the City Hall, the city's throng crowded about the registration booths; 
one portion of the population to place their names on the list from whence Uncle Sam could call 
them, the other portion to assist the first or applaud them in that effort. The thrill of the hour 
found a response in the recruiting stations where many above and below the conscription age 
put their signatures to enlistment blanks. The downtown section of the city was deserted in 
the early hours of the day, but, as the afternoon grew on, groups of applauding enthusiasts could 
be seen on Main, Niagara, Broadway and other prominent thoroughfares cheering the flag, the Presi- 
dent and the boys who were then offering to their country their services, and their lives if need be. 

General Crowder, in his report to the Secretary of War,* paid a tribute to the splendid organi- 
zation formed throughout the Nation to carry out the registration plan, and Governor Whitman, 
on a visit to Buffalo a few days after the registration, expressed his delight in the fact that Buffalo 
had led all cities of the State and "probably of the Nation" in making a complete return on its 
work. He complimented the citizens of Buffalo, the Mayor and his associates on their achievement. 

Under the terms of the original proclamation, the city had been divided into sixteen districts 
containing a population of approximately .30,000 each. These districts were made up of con- 
tiguous wards and were known as the local exemption districts. It was contemplated to have 
the Mayor name a district board of three members for each of these districts. The towns of the 
County were divided into four districts of about 30,000 each, and the Sheriff had named a board 
for each district. Suddenly that plan was altered, and the members of the exemption boards 
were nominated by the political organizations. As a consequence the work of the Registration 
Boards ended earlier than had been anticipated. Their duties were concluded by a telegram from 
the Adjutant General on July 6th advising those having custody of the registration cards to turn 
them over to the exemption boards. The telegram also cited the penalty for any failure in the 
process of exchanging custodial care of the cards. Until the receipt of that telegram the vast 
army of registration workers were unadvised of the fact that their services being faithfully ren- 
dered had earned them freedom from penal prosecution. The Boards' light went out abruptly. 
Mayor Fuhrmann issued a proclamation expressing the city's appreciation of the splendid ser- 
vices the registration workers had so patriotically tendered. 

Major Turgeon reported! for the Registration Guard thanking the men who had served under 
him, expressing to the Mayor his appreciation of the honor conferred and entertaining the hope 
that the work they performed had proved of service to the Nation. 

*" It suffices here to say that on the morning of June 5th. a perfectly co-ordinated system which, by the patriotic and devoted co-operation of 
the officials and citizens of the several States, had been created almost in a fortnight, stood ready to tlie tasl^. On the evening of that day, prac- 
tically the entire male population of the United States between the ages of 21 and 30 had presented themselves for enrollment for service, and 
within 48 hours the returns in the city of Washington were 90 per cent complete, A volume that would read as an epic of patriotic ingenuity 
and endeavor could be devoted to the story of the registration in many of the States. Seemingly insurmountable difficulties were overcome. 
The men of the Nation made their first response to the call of national need in a unison that removed all doubt of the solidarit.v and devotion of 
our people. The event proved the President's forecast of it. 

"June 5th is destined to become one of the most significant days in American history." 

From report of E. H. Crowder, ProvosI Marshal General. 

Room 12, City and County Hall 
Newton E, Turoeon, Chief of Guard Buffalo, June 7th, 1917. 

Hon. Louis P. Fuhrmann, Mayor 

Buffalo, N. Y. 

I have the honor to report that in accordance with your instructions, as head of the Registration Board, there was formed, in this city, a 
Registration Guard, consisting of: 

</>ne Chief of Guard: 1 .\djutant and Chief of Aides; 8 Aides; 3 Inspectors; 6 Inspectors' Aides; 27 Ward Captains; 191 Lieutenants (one 
for each Registration District); 7 Relay Teams of from six to ten men each from the Greater Buffalo Club and the Rotary Club of this city. 

(Continued on next page) 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 81 


Louis P. Fuhrmann, Chairman 
Daniel J. Sweeney, Secretary. Francis E. Fronczak, Medical Officer 

Edward Stengel, Chairman 
John H. Meahl, Secretary. Fred M. Boyle, Medical Officer 

Chief of Guard — Newton E. Turgeon. 
Chief of Aides and Adjutant — Ernest G. Hatch. 
Aides — Cleveland H. Babcock, J. Remsen Bennett, Arthur L. Chambers, Albert J. Chestnut, Frank E. Lahey, 

Albert A. Mason, F. A. G. Merrill, Ward H. McPherson. 
Inspector, First Division — Captain Alexander R. Robertson. 
Aides, First Division — Lieut. W. J. Piatt, Lieut. George E. Farthing. 
Inspector, Second Division — Major G. Barrett Rich, Jr. 
Aides, Second Division — Milton C. Guggenheimer, Alan Eraser. 
Inspector, Third Division — Major R. H. Templeton. 
Aides, Third Division — Capt. George F. Root, Lieut. Ray B. Kurtz. 

1st Ward— Capt. H.W. Nachbar, 6 Municipal Bldg.; 2d Ward— Capt. J. R. Horton, 1120 Prudential Bldg.; 3d Ward 
—Capt. E. P. Bacon, 453 Ellicott Square; 4th Ward— Capt. H. P. Bosworth, 419 Chicago Street; 5th Ward— 
Capt. J. Craig Roberts, 662 Ellicott Square; 6th Ward— Capt. W. C. R. Hazard, 310 German Insurance Bldg.; 
7th Ward— Capt. F. C. Fornes, 534 Main Street; 8th Ward— Capt. W. M. Wilson, 35 Pearl Street; 9th Ward— 
Capt. William Kusztelniak, 360 Bristol Street; 10th Ward — Capt. Andrew Kazmierczak, Woltz Avenue and 
Stanislaus Street; 11th Ward— Capt. John W. Wargin, City Clerk's Office; 12th Ward— Capt. Henry R. Ford; 
41 Eagle Street; 13th Ward— Capt. J. C. Arbogast, 366 Main Street; 14th Ward— Capt. G. A. Frisch, 443 Gene- 
see Street; 15th Ward— Capt. S. C. Moss, 170 Franklin Street; 16th Ward— Capt. Joseph W. Becker, 21 South 
Division Street; 17th Ward— Capt. Clarence MacGregor, 690 Ellicott Square; 18th Ward— Capt. J. M. Overfield, 
Jr., 43 Boyd Street; 19th Ward— Capt. Frank Gibbons, 102 Erie County Bank Bldg.; 20th Ward— Capt. Frederick 
H. Holtz, 211 White Bldg.; 21st Ward— Capt. W. W. McElroy, 19 W. Genesee Street; 22d Ward— Capt. Charles 
R. Hurley, 501 People's Bank Bldg.; 23d Ward— Capt. Walter F. Hofheins, 1212 Prudential Bldg.; 24th Ward— 
Capt. C. T. Doorty, 746 Seventh Street; 25th Ward- Capt. D. R. Nott, 497 Washington Street; 26th Ward— 
Capt. William E. Otto, 202 Pearl Street; 27th Ward— Capt. H. C. Elwood, 800 Morgan Bldg. 

An Automobile Service Department with 1 Chief of Automobile Service; 1 Assistant Chief of Automobile Service; 15 Aides; 257 Automobile 
owners, and in addition 4 Special Service men and 1 Stenographer. 

Accompanying this communication is a compilation showing the personnel of the Guard as above outlined; and in addition, in so far as I am 
able to give it to you, a list of the names of the men who acted as Registrars in each of the various Districts and Wards of the entire city. This 
latter compilation is as it came to me from the City Clerk. 

It will be interesting to you, I am sure, to be advised that all of the above service was rendered voluntarily and without remuneration of any 
kind or character. 

In completing this tour of duty, I would feel that I had failed in one of the most important portions of my work, if I neglected to refer to the 
wonderful (as it was nothing else) support and co-operation and the everywhere apparent spirit of loyalty and patriotism, which pervaded the 
whole organization, and prompted every man connected with it. 

To attempt to present to you separately the work of the various individuals, would be a task difficult of performance and would probably 
weary you, but I feel so strongly with reference to the particular service rendered by Mr. Ernest G. Hatch. Adjutant and Chief of Aides: together 
with'the twelve men under him, the work of Mr. Mason B. Hatch, Chief of Automobile Serx-ice, Mr. Edward W. Case, Assistant Chief of Auto- 
mobile Service, and the fifteen aides working under them, and also that of Mr. John J. Sly, that I can not fail to at least mention them especially 

I feel it a further duty to call to your attention the fact that the New York Telephone Company and the Federal Telephone Company rendered 
prompt and competent service throughout the day, the Federal Company even agreeing to frank the messages over their line. 

I thank you for the honor conferred upon me in calling me into this service, and I am more than repaid if the work which has been done has 
been of service to my country, and satisfactory to you as its representative. 


N. E. TVRGEON, Chief of Guard. 






1000 aooo 3000 4000 eooo 


\ South Park \ 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 83 


WHILE the Selective Service Bill was still pending in Congress, plans were made to put the 
law in operation. It had been General Crowder's intention to utilize the registration 
mechanism for the selection. Changes inserted in the bill, however, required consider- 
able readjustment of the registration system. Under the original plan appointments were to 
be made by the Governor on the recommendation of the Mayors of cities and the Sheriffs of 
counties. The change in the law required the President to make the appointments, but the 
recommendations and the general control of the law's operation were left to the several States. 
In some States the registration machinery was utilized, but a new plan was evolved in New York 
State, and in many others. The men nominated by Mayor Fuhrmann and by Sheriff Stengel 
were never formally submitted for appointment. Instead, the actual nomination of the men 
for service on the exemption boards locally was made by the leaders of the two dominant political 
parties. The Democratic organization named one member of the Board and the Republican 
organization named another. The State Department of Health named the third — the medical 
member. The political complexion of the boards was in accord with that of the State, 
but no question of partisan or party politics entered into the disposition of cases, and 
in all the thousands of disputed claims, no charge of political favoritism nor political dis- 
crimination was ever raised. The record was surprisingly and exceptionally free from such 

The change had come so quickly from nomination by the Mayor to designation by the political 
organizations, the latter did not have time to inquire into the availability of draft board nominees, 
and many were chosen who immediately found it impossible or undesirable to serve. Criticism 
naturally arose over the method, and some of the newspapers were exceptionally sharp in their 
comments. As the machinery moved into operation, however, and the board members began 
to groan under the volume of work heaped upon them, the censure changed to sympathy and soon 
auxiliary bodies of various kinds sprang into existence to render aid in carrying out the draft 

The areas of jurisdiction of the local boards were the same as those of originally contemplated 
registration boards. One board of three members was named for each of the sixteen city and 
the four county exemption districts. Local boards were given original jurisdiction of all claims 
for exemption or discharge except those on the ground of engagement in industry and agriculture, 
cognizance of which was vested in what was known as district boards. The territory of these 
was co-extensive with the Federal judicial district. From the local board the right of appeal to 
the district board was provided, but the decision of the latter in all matters within the original 
province of the local boards was final. From matters disposed of by the district boards 
appeal could be taken to the President. The principal questions to be decided by the 
local boards were those of physical fitness and dependency. The regulations permitted the 
exemption of any man who had a wife, a child, aged mother or father, depending solely 
upon him for support. This question, from the point of view of the government, involved 
circumstances of domestic relation which required the sympathetic consideration of the 
neighbors of the registrant. The personnel of the local boards was authorized and urged 
to be selected with reference to their environment rather than to their professions or 

On July 2d the appointment of the Buffalo and Erie County boards was announced by the 
Governor, but the appointments had apparently been made somewhat earlier. 

The following list contains the names of those originally appointed and the length of their ser- 
vices; also those named to fill vacancies: 

84 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

Local Board No. 1, City of Buffalo: 

Keller, Andrew J., 754 Seneca Street, Chairman, appointed June 23, 1917; Healy, Michael J., Secretary, appointed 
June 23, 1917; Lynch, Charles V., 700 South Division Street, Secretary, appointed July 14, 1917, vice Michael J. 
Healy, resigned; Allen. Dr. Thomas G., 439 Elk Street, appointed June 23, 1917. 

Local Board No. 2, City of Buffalo: 

Harris, Elmer E., 22 Maurice Street, Chairman, appointed June 23, 1917; Coughlin, Timothy P., 18 Kenefiek 
Avenue, Secretary, appointed .June 23, 1917; Villaume, Dr. Edw. L., 508 South Park Avenue, appointed June 
23, 1917; Woodruff, Dr. John V., 1824 Seneca Street, appointed August 19, 1918, vice Dr. Edward Villaume, 

Local Board No. 3, City of Buffalo: 

Bruso, Dr. C. Frank, 146 Dorchester Road, Chairman, appointed June 23, 1917; Willert, Charles S., 504 Broad- 
way, appointed June 23, 1917; Durr, Abram, 276 Jefferson Street, appointed July 12, 1917, vice Charles S. Wil- 
lert, resigned; Endres, Edward J., 324 Pine Street, appointed June 23, 1917; Healy, Michael J., appointed July 
14, 1917, vice E. J. Endres, resigned; Endres, Edward J., 324 Pine Street, appointed February 23, 1918, vice 
Michael J. Healy, deceased. 

Local Board No. 4, City of Buffalo; 

Yox, John, 606 William Street, Chairman, appointed July 21, 1917; Duffy, John, 233 Bristol Street, appointed; 
Ditchler, John, 870 Clinton Street, appointed, vice John Duffy, resigned; Theobald, Fred W., 150 Emslie Street, 
Secretary, appointed March 18, 1918, vice John Ditchler, resigned; Roberts, Dr. George F., 281 Emslie Street, 
appointed June 23, 1917. 

Local Board No. 5, City of Buffalo: 

Burzynski, Frank S., 591 Fillmore Avenue, Chairman, appointed June 23, 1917; Dorasewicz, Boleslaw, Secretary, 
appointed June 23, 1917; Smokowski, Peter B., 875 Fillmore Avenue, appointed Secretary July 12, 1917, vice 
Boleslaw Dorasewicz, resigned; Lustig, Dr. Emil, 553 Fillmore Avenue, appointed June 23, 1917. 

Local Board No. 6, City of Buffalo: 

Rahl, Henry J., 254 Main Street, Chairman, appointed .June 23, 1917; Jerge, Henry F., appointed June 23, 1917; 
McCue, Daniel J., appointed December 20, 1917, vice Henry F. Jerge, resigned; Jerge, Henry F., 803 Humboldt 
Parkway, appointed Secretary, vice Daniel J. McCue, resigned; Bentz, Dr. C. A., 84 Orange Street, appointed 
June 23, 1917. 

Local Board No. 7, City of Buffalo: 

Wedekindt, Ernst, 5 Walden Avenue, appointed Chairman June 23, 1917; Maloney, Thomas F., appointed 
January 14, 1918, vice Ernst Wedekindt, resigned; Riehl, Charles, appointed January 21, 1918, vice Thomas F. 
Maloney, resigned; Woltz, Charles J., appointed February 23, 1918, vice Charles Riehl, resigned; Wedekindt, 
Ernst, 5 Walden Avenue, appointed March 15, 1918, vice Charles J. Woltz, resigned; Lambrix, Charles A., 1074 
Fillmore Avenue, Secretary, appointed June 23, 1917; Hengerer, Dr. A. W., 441 Pratt Street, appointed June 
23, 1917. 

Local Board No. 8, City of Buffalo: 

Nixon, James L., 232 Sumner Place, Chairman, appointed June 23, 1917; Joslyn, Edward E., 614 Walden Avenue, 
Secretary, appointed June 23, 1917; Charters, Dr. J. W., 540 Walden Avenue, appointed June 23, 1917. 

Local Board No. 9, City of Buffalo: 

Kloten, Cassius W., 25 Glenwood Avenue, Chairman, appointed June 23, 1917; Ulrich, Charles, appointed Sec- 
retary June 23, 1917; Bagley, Frederick G., appointed .July 12, 1917, vice Charles LHrich, resigned; Fix, Charles 
J., 629 Elhcott Street, appointed July 23, 1917, vice Frederick G. Bagley, resigned; Kessel, John A., 16 South- 
ampton Street, appointed August 29, 1917, vice Charles J. Fix, resigned; Meidenbauer, Dr. J. G., 291 Maple 
Street, appointed June 23, 1917. 

Local Board No. 10, City of Buffalo; 

Fechter, Louis, Sr., 1150 Bailey Avenue, Chairman, appointed June 23, 1917; Mathew, Thomas, 269 North 
Ogden Street, Secretary, appointed June 23, 1917; State, Joseph N., 1226 Bailey Avenue, Secretary, appointed 
July 20, 1917, vice Thomas Mathew, resigned; Cunningham, William P., 1222 Bailey Avenue, Secretary, ap- 
pointed August 1, 1918, vice Joseph N. State, resigned; Thoma, Dr. FridoHn, 1072 Lovejoy Street, appointed 
June 23, 1917. 

Local Board No. 11, City of Buffalo: 

Paulis, Peter, Chairman, appointed June 23, 1917; Beuchi, William C, 2094 Genesee Street, Chairman, appointed 
July 21, 1917, vice Peter Paulis, resigned; Tischendorf, Carl, Secretary, appointed June 23, 1917; Reickert, 
Charles A., 214 Sprenger Street, Secretary, appointed June 24, 1918, vice Carl Tischendorf, resigned; Mehnert, 
Dr. R. C, appointed June 23, 1917; Trotter, Dr. Homer A., 16 Kehr Street, appointed July 20, 1917, vice Dr. 
R. C. Mehnert, resigned. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 


Training the School Boys 

86 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

Local Board No. 12, City of Buffalo: 

Smith, Jacob F., 55 Eastwood Place, Chairman, appointed June 23, 1917; Hahl, Charles A., 153 Jewett Avenue, 
Chairman, appointed September 30, 1918, vice Jacob F. Smith, resigned; Bennett, Leslie J., 1745 Amherst Street, 
Secretary, appointed June 23, 1917; Lapp, Ervin A., 12 Parker Avenue, Secretary, appointed January 31, 1917, 
vice Leslie J. Bennett, resigned; Westinghouse, Dr. G. H., 2830 Main Street, appointed June 23, 1917; Gregory, 
Dr. Joseph A., 158 Wallace Avenue, appointed March 27, 1918, vice Dr. G. H. Westinghouse, resigned. 

Local Board No. 13. City of Buffalo: 

Tovey, Alfred E., 1724 Niagara Street, Chairman, appointed June 23, 1917; Humphrey, William J., 359 Dear- 
born Street, Secretary, appointed June 23, 1917; McKee, Dr. O. S., appointed June 23, 1917; Hoffman, Dr. 
H. C, appointed July 12, 1917, vice Dr. O. S. McKee, resigned; Frudnowski, Dr. Joseph F., appointed July 20, 
1917, vice Dr. H. C. Hoffman, resigned; Urbanski, Dr. N. A. J., 472 Amherst Street, appointed November 24, 
1917, vice Dr. Joseph F. Frudnowski, resigned. 

Local Board No. 14, City of Buffalo: 
. Haflfa, Elias, 265 Maryland Street, Chairman, appointed June 23, 1917; Oppenheimer, Jesse, Graystone Hotel, 
Secretary, appointed June 23, 1917; Bresnahan, James J., Touraine Hotel, Secretary, appointed March 22, 1918, 
vice Jesse Oppenheimer, resigned; Briggs, Dr. A. H., Hotel Buckingham, appointed June 23, 1917. 

Local Board No. 15, City of Buffalo: 

Francis, George F., 245 Lafayette Avenue, Chairman, appointed June 23, 1917; Conway, William F., 720 Pros- 
pect Avenue, Secretary, appointed June 23, 1917; Frost, Dr. E. L., 212 Massachusetts Avenue, appointed June 
23, 1917; Clements. Dr. Charles A., 420 Richmond Avenue, appointed August 14, 1918, vice Dr. E. L. Frost, 

Local Board No. 16, City of Buffalo: 

Reilley, William W., 408 Brisbane Building, Chairman, appointed June 23, 1917; Trible, Walter P., Chairman, 
appointed February 23, 1918, vice W. W. Reilley, resigned; Reilley, William W., 408 Brisbane Building, Chair- 
man, appointed April 4, 1918, vice Walter P. Trible, resigned; Hull, John M., 124 Lexington Avenue, Chairman, 
appointed August 26, 1918, vice William W. Reilley, resigned; Wettlaufer, Conrad E., Secretary, appointed June 
23, 1917; Yates, Harry, 1243 Delaware Avenue, Secretary, appointed July 21, 1917, vice Conrad E. Wettlaufer, 
resigned; Thompson, Dr. J. C, 666 Auburn Avenue, appointed June 23, 1917. 

Local Board No. 1, County of Erie: 

Patton, John K., Tonawanda, N. Y., Chairman, appointed June 23, 1917; Briggs, Maxwell E., Lackawanna, 
N. Y., Secretary, appointed June 23, 1917; Trevett, Dr. Ira P., Lackawanna, N. Y., appointed June 23, 1917, 

Local Board No. 2, County of Erie: 

Pierce, Daniel C, 82 Pierce Avenue, Hamburg, N. Y., Chairman, appointed June 23, 1917; Schlehr, John W., 
Secretary, appointed June 23, 1917; Thorn, Perry M., Secretary, appointed July 11, 1918, vice John W. Schlehr, 
resigned; Schlehr, John W., West Seneca, N. Y., Secretary, appointed July 22, 1918, vice Perry M. Thorn, re- 
signed; Flemming, Dr. Theo. E., Gardenville, N. Y., appointed June 23, 1917. 

Local Board No. 3, County of Erie: 

Law, Benedict W., Collins, N. Y., Chairman, appointed June 23, 1917; Woodward, Ira C, Secretary, appointed 
June 23, 1917; DeWitt, C. Reilley, Hudson, N. Y., Secretary, appointed July 21, 1917, vice Ira C. Woodward, 
resigned; Place, FVed E., Gowanda, N. Y., Secretary, appointed June 23, 1917, vice C. Reilley DeWitt, resigned; 
Ward, Dr. Walden M., North Collins, N. Y., appointed June 23, 1917. 

Local Board No. 4, County of Erie: 

Davis, George A., Lancaster, N. Y., Chairman, appointed June 23, 1917; Dickerson, James H., Akron, N. Y., 
Secretary, appointed June 23, 1917; Helwig, Dr. F. A., Akron, N. Y., appointed June 23, 1917. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 








































































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Buffalo's Part in the World War 89 



Office of the PROvosr M4RSH4L Gemeral 


July 26, 1917. 
To Members of Local Boards: 

You are entering on a difficult task, the gravity of which "is beyond anything 
that can be said in the way of discussion. You realize the significance of what 
you are to do, and you know that a responsibility, heavier perhaps than any 
you have ever faced, is upon you. 

War demands individual sacrifice to the common cause. No people ever ap- 
proached war with a calmer appreciation of that sacrifice or a firmer resolve to 
bear it and to present themselves "to be classified for service in the place to which 
it shall best serve the common good to call them." This calm determination 
could not exist were it not for the confidence of the nation in its institutions. In 
this public confidence is found the very spirit of the Selective Service Law. The 
most sacred rights of country, home, and family are entrusted for adjudication to 
local citizens and officials, nominated by State Governors and appointed by the 
President. The most equitable rules that could be devised have been prescribed 
for guidance, and the administration of these rules and the sacrifice that is offered 
by your neighbors is entrusted to your hands. 

From every one is demanded a sacrifice. But there is one thought to be kept 
always in your mind. The selected man offers his life. There is no greater giving 
than this; and that thought should guide you always. There may be a few who 
will urge upon you claims for exemption or discharge that, whatever may be your 
inclinations of sympathy or afTection, you will know ought not to be granted. It 
will strengthen you to remember that for every exemption or discharge that is made 
for individual convenience, or to escape personal loss of money or property, or for favor 
or affection, some other man ivhose time umild not otherwise have come, rmist incur 
the risk of losing his life. 

You are not a court for the adjustment of differences between two persons in con- 
troversy. You are agents of the Government, engaged in selecting men for the 
Government and there is no controversy. You, acting for the Government, 
are to investigate each case in the interests of the Nation, and never in the interests of 
an individual. There is not one exemption or discharge in the law or regulations 
that is put there for the benefit of any individual. All are there for the benefit of 
the Nation and to the end that "the whole Nation may be a team in which each 
man shall play the part for which he is best fitted." 

There should be no rules like those of court procedure, no technical rules of evi- 
dence. You should proceed to investigate cases about which you are not satis- 
fied exactly as you, as an individual, would proceed to inform yourself of any fact 
about which you are in doubt. 

Last of all, it is important to say a word about your own sacrifice. The place 
to which you have been called is one which no man would seek save in the per- 
formance of one of the highest of patriotic duties. 

The Nation needs men, and needs them quickly. The hours will then be long 

and the work absorbing. The duty is always to take and never to give, and human 

nature is such there will be little praise and some blame. The sacrifice of many of 

those whose cases are to be decided is no greater than that of the men who are to 

decide them; and your only reward must be the knowledge that, at great personal 

sacrifice, you are rendering your country an indispensable service in a matter of 

the utmost moment. „ ^^ ^ 

E. H. Crowder, 

Provost Marshal General. 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 


THE quota for Buffalo and the other cities and towns of the county was allocated by Gov- 
ernor Whitman on July 24th. Buffalo was called upon to produce 4,204 men, and the bal- 
ance of the county 1,461. Regulations and instructions required each board immediately 
to call before it for physical examination, in the order of their liability, a sufficient number of 
registrants to procure about one-half of the first quota of the board. Under the conditions which 
obtained each registrant was required to present his claim for exemption within seven days from 
the date he was called. In the absence of such a claim the registrant was deemed to have waived 
his right to make a claim. Boards had been instructed that no exemption authorized in the selec- 
tive service law was intended for the direct benefit of an individual and that every such exemption 

Mason Hatch's Flying S()uadron 
Scene in front of City Hall during the registration period 

was for the sole benefit of the Government. Very generally that principle was observed through- 
out the entire period of the draft law, and especially so in those earlier days of its operation. In 
the arduous time to come the board members could more readily pick out the good from the bad, 
the true from the false in the mass of evidence and affidavits constantly piling up before them. 

The work of the draft boards had not proceeded far when it became apparent that the claims 
for exemption on the ground of dependency were dangerously large. The Senate, in passing the 
bill, had debated at length the question of whether or not married men should be exempted as such. 
On that point the Senate voted negatively. Dependency, to secure exemption, would have to be 
proved. Accordingly, married men came forward with their claims. Some claimed exemption 
whose wives were taking in washing, doing laundry work, to support themselves, their children 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 91 

and worthless husbands — -now cringing registrants. Men of considerable wealth, in occasional 
instances, and husbands who had not lived with their wives for years, were among the number 
to claim exemption on the ground of their wives being "mainly dependent on their daily labor for 
support." On August 8th, the Provost Marshal General, in an endeavor to relieve the trouble and 
danger of that situation, ruled that in the class of cases where the registrant, as a matter of fact, 
had a wife not depending on his daily labors for support, and the parents of the registrant or of 
his wife were ready, able and willing to undertake the support of the wife during the absence of 
the husband, the boards were justified in finding such a registrant had not a good claim for ex- 
emption on the ground of dependency. 

Local Board Sixteen, because it had within its confines the wealthiest portions of the city, 
found itself in a peculiar situation. From such homes as abounded in its districts, more married 
men, probably, were called under these first rules, than elsewhere in the city. Naturally some 
dissatisfaction resulted. Lengthy affidavits were submitted, tending to show dependency where 
public opinion had long suppo.sed none existed. The local board members, in an eifort to decide 
every case on the same basis, confined themselves strictly to the regulations, as in fact they had 
no choice but to do. The board was confronted with this rule: "Whenever ***** the wife 
is not left without reasonably adequate support but will receive such support from other sources, 
there is no dependency rendering discharge advisable." The following classes of cases came 
within that ruHng: 

First — Where the parents or other relatives of the wife or the husband were able, ready and 
willing to provide adequate support for her (and children, if any) during the absence of the hus- 

Second — Where there existed some arrangement by which salary or wage of husband was con- 
tinued * * * * 

In addition to the above, the President, being asked to elucidate further, said: "There are 
undoubtedly many cases * * * of men who are married and yet whose accumulations or other 
economic surroundings are such that no dependency of the wife exists in fact." Economic sur- 
roundings such as automobiles, clubs, summer homes, etc., naturally pointed either to "accumu- 
lations" or to income from parents. In some cases where the income was shown to come from the 
parents, these parents, in the particular cases referred to, now announced that they were not 
able, ready and willing to support dependents if the registrant went to war. These people were 
put on record when the board finally adopted a supplementary affidavit. In this, all registrants 
claiming exemption were obliged to have both the registrant's and his wife's parents' signature 
to the affidavit, stating that they were not able, ready and willing to support the dependents of 
the registrant. In this way, the burden of proof rested upon the registrant and his family to de- 
clare their position and left no doubt in the minds of the people what their position was. When 
the registrant furnished these affidavits from the parents, discharge was granted. 

On December 15th, 1917, when the questionnaires were issued, that trouble was overcome by 
the class system, whereby registrants were put in classes from one to five. Before that time, a 
man was either accepted or rejected. 

The other feature which gave the boards much trouble was the question of marriages consum- 
mated after May 18th, 1917. The regulations provided that each case should receive individual 
attention. Had that been literally lived up to, it would have been absolutely impossible to give 
satisfaction, because each individual thought his case was good and the others bad. As a result 
most boards adopted a rule, some knowingly, others instinctively, whereby they held every man 
who married after May 18th, 1917, as having been aware of the fact that he was drafted and there- 
fore unqualified to take upon himself dependents. W. W. Reilley, Chairman of Board 16, appeared 
to be the leader in that determination. The position of his board, in that respect, was fully justi- 
fied later, when the War Department issued regulations taking practically the same ground. Had 
the regulations beeen issued sooner they would have saved the local boards a tremendous amount 
of work. 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 


Realizing that registrants coming from every walk of life into a new and hopelessly unfamiliar 
field would require some assistance in properly putting before the boards all the facts essential 
' to a reasonable consideration of their individual cases, provision was madefor the appointment 
of government appeal agents. Early in September, 1917, William S. Rann, corporation counsel 
of Buffalo, received a letter from Adjutant General Stotesbury informing him that by command 
of the Governor he had been appointed government appeal agent for the City of Buffalo. He 
was somewhat pointedly referred in that letter to section six of the Selective Service Law which 
provided, among other things, that if any person charged with the duty of carrying into effect 
the provisions of the act or the regulations made thereunder should fail or neglect fully to perform 
any duty required of him, he would be guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction be punished 
by imprisonment for a period of not more than one year, unless he was subject to military law, 
in which case he would be tried by court martial and suffer such punishment as a court martial 
might direct. Mr. Rann was not a timid man. He had held public office in Buffalo for a number 
of years. His duties under a new form of government had become exceedingly extensive, arduous 
and exacting. Being a fair number of years beyond the military age, he conceived it his duty to 
"do his bit" in whatever way the government pointed it out to him, and despite the rather har- 
rowing list of conditional punishments which his letter of appointment contained he took up the 
new task. First securing authority to appoint an appeal agent for each district in the city, and 
an additional appeal agent as his associate in the handling of details, he began the work. The 
appeal agents first named for the several divisions were as follows: 

Girls of School No. 41 Knitting for Soldiers 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 93 

Associate Appeal Agent, Louis J. Voltz. 

First Division, Bart J. Shanahan; Second Division, Harry F. DeCeu; Tliird Division, Andrew T. Beasley; Fourth 
Division, Lech T. Niemo; Fifth Division, Leon J. Nowal<; Sixth Division, Jacob Kaufman; Seventh Division, J. 
Neil Mahoney; Eighth Division, Lewis F. Lindal; Ninth Division, Preston M. Albro; Tenth Division, George L. Grobe; 
Eleventh Division, Raymond C. Voght; Twelfth Division, John V. Maloney; Thirteenth Division, Fred D. Russell; 
Fourteenth Division, Edward N. Mills; Fifteenth Division, Henry W. Willis; Sixteenth Division, Charles W. Strong. 

Some changes were made afterwards owing to the resignation of several of the appeal agents 
on account of pressure of other duties, and in some instances because of other war work assumed 
by them. Mr. Shanahan was succeeded in the first division by James V. Downey. Mr. Beasley 
was transferred from the third to the fourth division and Harry Lipsitz was appointed in 
his place for the third division. Shortly after this transfer Mr. Beasley became a successful 
candidate for member of the Assembly and his place in the fourth division was filled by the ap- 
pointment of Elmer C. Miller. Mr. Mahoney enlisted in the navy and Charles J. Woltz was 
chosen in his place for the seventh division. Walter F. Schmieding succeeded Mr. Lindal in the 
eighth division and in the ninth division Chester McNeil was the successor of Preston M. Albro, 
who enlisted in the military service. 

Section forty-seven of the regulations provided that it be the duty of appeal agents to appeal 
from any deferred classification of a local board which in the opinion of the agent should be re- 
viewed by the district board; to care for the interest of uninformed registrants, and where the 
decision of a local board was against the interests of such registrants and where it appeared that 
such registrants would not take appeals, due to their own nonculpable ignorance, to inform them 
of their rights and assist them to enter appeals to the district board; to investigate and report 
upon matters which were submitted; to suggest, when advisable, the reopening of any case; to 
impart to the local boards information which, in the opinion of the appeal agent, ought to be 
investigated; and, also, to make such suggestions and impart such information, as the case might 
be, to the district board in order that it might more efficiently exercise its power to instruct local 
boards to take additional proof. 

It will be readily understood that the work of the government appeal agents was not altogether 
pleasant. Many times it was their duty to inform registrants who, innocently or otherwise, were 
escaping from the military service that they must report to their local boards and accept classifi- 
cation in class one to avoid more disagreeable consequences. Much information in regard to 
such cases was received through anonymous communications. Mr. Rann reported one instance 
in which the mother of four boys, three of whom had been sent to camp, was left without means 
of supporting herself and a remaining child except what she could get from the boys in camp. 
Application was made for the return of one of the sons to her and it so happened that the son who, 
when at home, was a burden to her instead of a help, succeeded in being returned. Subsequently 
he was sent back to camp. 

Of course, there were innumerable instances where appeal agents were called upon to investi- 
gate marriages which had taken place after May 18, 1917, the day when the Selective Service Law 
was approved. That problem became a hideous nightmare to the draft boards. The evidence 
ofi'ered by the registrants in substantially all of those cases was startlingly similar. Receipts 
were produced to show the purchase of engagement rings and of furniture, the leasing of premises 
and the announcement of the engagement, together with the date fixed for the wedding, and in 
each case the betrothal was weeks or months prior to May 18th, while the wedding was weeks or 
months subsequent thereto. In most cases such claims were disallowed. 

The Provost Marshal General, in his report to the Secretary of War,* December, 1918, paid a 

* It was not intended, nor did they (appeal agents) interpret their duty to be, that they should be partisan representatives of the Government 
for the purpose, if possible, of placing every registrant in military service, as would normally be the case of a prosecuting attorney trying his docket. 
They properly conceived their duty to be" that of representing the Government by seeing that the selective principle of the selective service law 
was applied— that no man escaped who owed the duty to go, and that the Government was not put to the expense of sending to the camps men who 
were better fitted to preserve the necessary industries at liome and to protect the family integrity. Their province was to see that substantial 
fairness was observed; and the relative fewness of discharges at camps, of men finally accepted for service, is ample proof of the admirable manner 
in which that duty was performed. The outstanding fact that this duty was performed uncomplainingly and without any compensation what- 
ever, places them in the enviable position of the patriot who is unrewarded, save in the consciousness of duty well performed, and in the knowledge 
that both the Government and the people composing it proudly acknowledge a debt which cannot be liquidated. 

Such devotion to duty can only be described by the tliought that these men were putting into their part of the great tight the conscience of the 
American people. — From General Crowder's Report. 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 

Lafayette Square Any Day— 1917 

Crowd assembling as prominent speakers appeal for military enlistment 

splendid tribute to the work of the appeal agents, and in his report concerning their work Mr. 
Rann said: 

" I know of no class of men who, without hope of pecuniary reward, labored night and day for 
the enforcement of the provisions of the Selective Service Act and regulations more faithfully 
and unselfishly, sacrificing recreation and business, than the appeal agents of Buffalo. Those 
who contributed to the great part which the United States took in the world war, no matter in 
what branch of the service, are entitled to everlasting credit, and not the least of these are the 
appeal agents who were animated, not by love of applause or hope of gain, but by a zeal for the 
welfare of the country and of the world. In the early months of their service many of them had 
to work against the opposition and, in some instances, the prejudice of members of the local 
boards, who felt that the appeal agents were spying upon their work. I think this feeling faded 
when it was discovered that the members of the local boards, the district board, the appeal agents, 
the legal advisory boards and the medical advisory boards were all co-operating in the same 
great cause." 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 95 


AGENCIES for the assistance of registrants and draft boards multiplied rapidly as America's 

/\ great National Army began to form. Every citizen who, by reason of advancing years or 
-^ -*- physical defect, was outside the realm of military service felt an obligation to assist in all 
governmental activities. A potential force could readily be gathered in any district for any work 
which came to hand. Minute men were around in abundance. In addition to all that, the Presi- 
dent was authorized to appoint, on recommendation of the Governor, legal and medical advisory 
boards for every locality. Pursuant to that authority, contained in section 30 of the selective 
service regulations. Governor Whitman nominated County Judge Philip A. Laing, chairman, 
General Samuel M. Welch, secretary, and Edward R. O'Malley to compose the legal advisory 
board for Erie County and they were duly appointed by President Wilson. The board organized, 
and prevailed upon Lawrence J. Collins to act as chief deputy for the county. Like Corporation 
Counsel Rann and his associate appeal agents, these legal advisers were exceptionally busy men 
at that time with private affairs, but private affairs counted little in those days. At the outset 
this board proceeded to effect an organization sufficiently large and competent to correctly advise 
and correctly assist all registrants in filling out their questionnaires, to the end that each quota 
certified to the various local boards could be filled within the allotted time. 

The organization so effected, was known as the associate legal advisory committee and num- 
bered in Erie County, eleven hundred and ten men and women, for the most part lawyers and 
school teachers. Their period of service covered eleven months, commencing in the latter part 
of December, 1917, and terminating in the latter part of November, 1918. Throughout the 
period of their service, the legal advisory board regulated and advised these workers from day 
to day on the various phases of their work. 

The greatest volume of work performed by the legal advisory boards grew out of the question- 
naire, an instrument designed to draw from the registrant every fact of value in allotting him 
to his most useful place in the country's service. With the advent of the questionnaire, the cen- 
sus man, the meter inspector, and all the other banes of human existence promptly slipped into 
positions of trivial importance. That masterpiece, while most efficacious to the Government, 
proved baffling to the average registrant. 

One local board received a questionnaire with nothing answered, but containing the notation 
across the face: "I'm ready when you are." 

Upon investigation, it was found that the registrant was a colored man, who, after attempting, 
without assistance, to fill out the paper concluded that the effort was beyond him, and hit upon 
this way of clearing the situation. 

The length and complexity of the questionnaire, coupled with the magnitude of its purpose in 
the conduct of the war, seemed to work confusion in the minds of a majority of registrants, and 
especially those of foreign extraction. One attorney tells of a registrant whom he was aiding in 
filling out his questionnaire. When that section was reached which required each registrant to 
underline that branch of the army in which he would prefer to serve if selected, the attorney 
enumerated the various branches, commencing with the artillery and ending with the signal 
corps. The registrant seemed absorbed in deep thought for some moments, then turning to the 
attorney, he said in all earnestness, " I prefer the Home Defense. Please put a line under that." 

As in the category of war machinery, nothing, from the standpoint of immediate importance, 
overshadowed the questionnaire, so in the ranks of the great civilian army during the crisis, none 
rendered more effective aid to the Government than this associate legal advisory committee. It 
was made up of a number of small committees, one acting for each local division and having as 
its chairman the appeal agent for such division. These committees in the City of Buffalo used 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 

as their headquarters for aiding registrants a grammar or high school in their respective districts. 
The work of the chief deputy to the legal advisory board consisted mainly in recruiting members 
for the associate legal advisory committee from various walks of life and in supplying help hurried- 
ly to districts where the number of registrants was too great for the regular committee to handle. 

The volume of work performed by General Welch, as secretary of the legal advisory board, 
and the conscientious manner of its execution, was almost, if not wholly, without parallel of its 
kind throughout the country. 

The associate legal advisory committee, like the members of the legal advisory board, received 
no compensation whatsoever. The effectiveness, and the untiring devotion to the cause, which 
characterized the labors of the legal advisoiy board, was splendidly sustained by the associate 
legal advisory committee. The task assigned to them was one that taxed to the utmost both 
nerves and patience, and for their splendid attitude in that trying ordeal, the lawyers and school 
teachers of Buffalo are forever entitled to commendation. 

Motor Corps Girls at Work 

Chief Edward P. Murphy. Buffalo Fire Department, and two ambulance drivers at a big Buffalo fire — 1917 

Nor did their efforts by any means cease with the aid they afforded registrants. It would be 
difficult to say how many claims for exemption or deferred classification, the district appeal board 
and the local boards for Erie County would otherwise have had to pass upon, were it not for the 
patriotism that was incessantly infused into luke-warm registrants by the members of the legal 
advisory committee. The tendency to escape, where possible, induction into the service was 
quite natural and not altogether infrequent, and it was the manifestation of this tendency in its 
various phases, which the legal advisory committee was forced to combat, and with tact and in- 
genuity, to overcome. Hence it may be safely asserted that the members in themselves were, 
indeed, a powerful contributing force to the upbuilding of the nation's man-power. Each regis- 
trant naturally sought to determine his right to exemption from military service, but once he 
learned it was his turn to go he quickly and bravely stepped into his place and it was that spirit 
which created the victorious United States Army. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 97 



ON August thirteenth, Nineteen Hundred and Seventeen, occurred the first meeting of District 
Board Number Three (Selective Service for the Western Federal District of New York. 
It was one of nine such Boards in New York State. Its jurisdiction covered the counties 
of Erie, Niagara, Orleans, Wyoming and Genesee. These counties were divided into twenty-six 
local boards. The meeting was held in quarters in the Iroquois Gas Building, at Church and 
Franklin Streets. 

As the Selective Service Law was put into operation, it speedily became evident that industrial 
classification was the most important work confronting the Board. The accomplishment of a 
two-fold result was imperative; first, to obtain a definite number of soldiers for the fighting force 
abroad, and, secondly, to conserve an army of industrial workers of the highest efficiency at 

At first hand this appeared a simple process, but it soon became seriously complicated, by 
reason of the fact that many preferred to battle on the home field, and into the refuge furnished 
by the war factories men poured from every line of endeavor. Frequent claims were made on 
behalf of "skilled industrial laborers" whose previous experience (often carefully camouflaged) 
showed "seven years a barber," "three years an actor," through every field — clerks, waiters, 
students, musicians, etc. Wages were no evidence of worth. As in other walks along with in- 
dustry's "necessities" came industry's "substitutes." Instances were noted of men receiving 
$75 a week, who in peace times could not command more than $20. The task of the district 
board to "part the goats upon the left hand and the sheep upon the right" thus became a stu- 
pendous undertaking. 

The Board's success is demonstrated by the fact that Buffalo never failed to answer the call 
for men; each time, they were entrained on the minute, and certainly no industries anywhere 
in the United States ran with greater efficiency. The members often felt themselves hard pressed, 
but that was their contribution to the great achievement. 

Classification of agricultural claims was more or less routine work, for at all times farmers 
were suffering from shortage of labor and it was evident to the Board that any man 
whose vocation was farming, or who was working on a farm before May 18, 1917, should 
be left on that farm, and the Board's policy in regard to agricultural claims was to grant 
every bonafide claim where the production showed any material surplus beyond the needs of the 
farm occupants. 

Perhaps the worst struggle of all came with classification on appeal of dependency cases, re- 
sulting from marriages after May 18th, 1917. District Boards were left to work out a line of 
action which would result in uniformity so far as that was possible of attainment. 

It was not until complete new regulations were issued in September, 1918, that definite 
rules were laid down for the handling of such cases, the final ruling being that the only 
valid dependency claim would be for the dependency of a child of such marriage, born or 

A few statistics set forth the gigantic task accomplished by District Boards, the Buffalo Board 
being an average illustration. 

It must be remembered that under the jurisdiction of this Board there were besides Buffalo, 
five counties, having a registration of 90,146, making our complete number of registrants 
230,744. From this number, until the signing of the armistice, the Board entertained 36,906 
claims. Of these 29,206 were industrial and agricultural, and 20,037 were granted. There 
were 7,700 appeals from Local Board decisions on various grounds, and of these 2,611 were 

98 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

Many humorous occurrences* and communications enlivened the work. The Board was 
showered with criticism and compliments, and no matter what it did, it was sure of being 
roundly abused and enthusiastically praised. The work certainly had many rewards. No 
agency ever established in Buffalo received heartier co-operation. City and county officials dis- 
played an eagerness to assist, and every request made of them was quickly met. Any necessities 
in the line of supplies which could not be obtained from the Government, were immediately sup- 
plied by Buffalo merchants. The Board had only to make its wants known and they were satis- 
fied. To mention Buffalo's patriotic citizens by name would fill several pages. 

When the work of the classification of the registrants of September 12, 1918, was contemplated, 
it was seen that greater latitude should prevail in regard to them. Up to September 1, 1918, 
only those industries which could show that they were contributing substantially and materially 
to the maintenance of the military establishment, to the effective operation of the military forces, 
or to the national interest during the emergency could obtain deferred classification for their men. 
The general rule followed was that such concerns should be immediate producers of war materials 
or allied concerns once removed, immediately supplying such major industries. 

As time passed, the activities of the country were rapidly converted to war purposes, and the 
Government extended this rule to include "occupations and employments" of a commercial 
nature, so that practically all barriers were down and claims were received, running the extremes, 
from laundries to patent medicines. To provide for the necessary adjustments between the 
necessities of the industries already given consideration and those not of that description, but 
contributing to the national interest during the emergency, there were appointed three industrial 
advisors to assist the District Board. The armistice came so quickly that only an indication was 
obtained of the important services these men were to render. 

The following advisors were named: G. P. Berner, of Buffalo, appointed by the Federal De- 
partment of Labor; Charles Parker, of Lockport, appointed by the Department of Agriculture, 
and Henry P. Werner, of Buffalo, appointed by the members of the District Board, 

* The registrants themselves, in their questionnaires, unconsciously, and the writers of the following letters, per- 
haps not always unconsciously, contributed to the Board's rejuvenation. 
We do not know how this man finished, but he began as a plain private: 

"Dear Sirs: 

" i have registered in BulTalo on June 5 but i didn't stay in the City, i left shortly and haven't been notified, i would like very much for you 
to write if i have bin called to the colors and if i am i am willing, i have bin in the army before, i have bin a commanding officer in the 8th ill. 
N. G. and i am cable of holding the same in any other regiment. 

"Now i will close as i have other things to tend to but at present time our god comes first, our country next then Mother Dear ao this is all." 

This is from a father who must have been surprised at the wonders Uncle Sam was able to perform: 

"I never was more surprised in my life to hear that my son is excepted and I appeal to you for another and thorough examination. He is a 
subject of rheumatism. In damp weather he has leakage of the heart and Asthmatic trouble of the Bronchial tube. He has two lap-over toes, 
one on each foot and has lost the grip from his right hand. The Dr. told him to get an outside job and beware of excitement. This sure is a sur- 
prise to everybody." 

M'any such as this one had to be caught on the fly: 

"I am writing for my questioneer papers. When I registered I was in the Erie Co. Pen doing one year. Now Ifam in the Erie Co. farm doing 
30 days. My time will be up May 11th, and I don't know what my address will be next." 

Not all mothers wanted their sons to stay at home: 

"I have a son whom is drafted by the newspapers. I would like to know if he has been medically examined and if so, how is he? Also if ex- 
empted, what for? his mother." 

He seems to have done his bit: 

"You ask me to report change of employment. I was formerly a Pennsylvania Telegraph operator but through merger of the Penn, R R. and 
Nickel Plate R. R. and the Nickel Plate R. R. taking over the Penn. R. R. makes me a Nickel Plate man. Only change is new boss, twice as much 
work, two roads instead of one." 

We were the clearing house for many complaints, this one being quite out of the ordinary: 

"I have just received a card from Albert, saying he is safe in France. He took out $10,000 insurance for me and I have not received a penny 

The war was a popular place for many to consign their troublesome "in-laws." No relief was furnished in this 
case, for the man proved to be beyond the age limit: 

"Dear Men of Military: 

"Please excuse me for writing to you but I can't help it. I was over to Buffalo for the weak end to see my sister. I really must say you have 
overlook a man that should be helping win this great war. Why I say this is, he is fiting day by day at home. I realy was in fear the one night 
I stade there. I ask my sister, duse he go on like this, she said 'yes and worse.' 

"If you get him I am sure this war will be over with fur if ever there's a devil on earth he is one. Such a broot, he is not a man. 

"I give you people a lot of prayers and hope you get him, when he has been in France he will treet a woman write." 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 


Division No. 3, of the Western Jitoicial District 

Mack, Norman E., Buffalo, N. Y., appointed August 4, 1917; Streifler, Henry, Buffalo, N. Y., appointed vice 
Norman E. Mack, resigned; Crosby, W. H., Buffalo, N. Y., appointed September 10, 1918, vice Henry Streifler, 
resigned; Moore, Dr. A. N., Lockport, N. Y., Secretary, appointed August 4, 1917; Smallwood, W. W., Warsaw, 
N. Y., appointed August 4, 1917; Wickser, John G., Buffalo, N. Y., appointed August 4, 1917; Houck, George 
E., Buffalo, N. Y., appointed March 26, 1918, vice John G. Wickser, resigned; O'Brian, John Lord, Buffalo, 
N. Y., appointed August 4, 1917; Davidson, George G., Jr., appointed September 28, 1917, vice John Lord 
O'Brian, resigned; Reilley, W. W., 410 Delaware Avenue, Buffalo, N. Y., appointed August 26, 1918, vice 
George G. Davidson, resigned; Williams, Silas W., East Aurora, N. Y., appointed March 14, 1918; Curtiss, 
Harlow C, Buffalo, N. Y., appointed March 14, 1918. 

Red Cross Campaign 

Buffalo volunteers preparing bandages for Red Cross work 

100 Buffalo's Part in the World War 


Buffalo realized very quickly after the declaration of war that something more than fighting 
men was necessary to win the war. Early in June, 1917, the Liberty Loan campaign had 
crashed in on a tightwad community. Not that Buffalonians were a more penurious people 
than the inhabitants of Cleveland, Penn Yan, Paducah, or any other American city, but they 
were not in the habit of giving. With Puritan-like fidelity and devotion they were brightening 
the corner where they were, and holding fast to the sermon philosophy of the Baseball Evan- 
gelist: "Get what you can and can what you get." 

The martial airs and the marching of troops of 1917 had stin-ed their blood, however, while 
Elliott C. McDougal and Walter P. Cooke, with their little band of liberty loaners, were shaking the 
town loose from some of its hoarded thousands. Frank S. McGraw, a treat-'em-rough Red Cross 
chairman, had succeeded in unraveling many a care-free and plethoric bankroll during the early 
weeks of the year and a sufficient number of dollars rolled therefrom to equip a base hospital. While 
the old community was still rocking and disturbed from the shock of such financial upsets, Robert 
W. Pomeroy and his advance army of Red Cross workers set up their stand and announced their 
purpose to raise $1,500,000 in Buffalo for 


"There's a rose that grows "It's the one red rose 

On No-Man's Land, Th' soldier knows, 

And it's wonderful to see; It's the work of the Master's hand. 

Though it's sprayed with tears, 'Neath the war's great curse 

It will live for years Stands the Red Cross nurse — 

In my garden of memory. She's the rose of No-Man's Land." 

Buffalo stood up especially fine in the first* and subsequent Red Cross drives. Campaigns for 
hospital funds, orphan collections and charity oi'ganization work had in the prior years met with 
only fair success. Donations had been small. It is not surprising that Mr. Pomeroy and his 
associates approached their Red Cross task with diffidence, albeit, determination. General Chair- 
man Davison had advised the local committee that Buffalo's proportion of the sum to be raised 
was fixed at $1,500,000 — a tremendous figure at that period in our community existence, but 
when William A. Rogers announced he would give $100,000 the people caught the spirit of the 
times. Patriotism was not confined entirely to the youth of the land. Bankers, brokers, artisans, 
laborers, clerks, the girls in the box factories, and those picking rags on the slides at the city 
dumps gave in equal measure from their respective incomes. 

On June 18th Mayor Fuhrmann received a telegram from President Wilson — in reality a tele- 
gram to the people of Buffalo — as follows: 

Washington, D. C. 4 P. M., June 18, 1917. 
Mayor L. P. Fuhrmann, 

Buffalo, N. Y.: 
TJie American people, by their overwhelming subscriptions to the Liberty Loan have given a new endorsement to the 
high principles for which America entered the war. Diiring the week now beginning, which I have designated Red Cross 
Week, they will have a unique privilege of manifesting America's unselfishness, as well as the real spirit of sacrifice that 
animates our people. May I urge that your city do its part in (he raising of the $100,000,000 Red Cross War Fund, 
measuring the generosity of its gifts by the urgency of the need. 
WooDROW Wilson. 

* In population Buffalo is the tenth city of the Union. In giving to the Red Cross she stands seventh. This is a good record. It speaks volumes 
for the charity and the patriotism of the people. It reflects credit upon the earnest men and women who, under the direction of Mr. Robert W. 
Pomeroy, worked so diligently for the success of the campaign. 

The allotment for Buffalo compared with some other cities was high, but that did not daunt those behind the movement. It merely spurred 
them on to renewed effort and they are justly entitled to the thanks of the community for their good work. 

They have put Buffalo upon the map as one of the cities whose loyalt.v to the Government has shown itself in the most practical and 
helpful of wa.vs." — (Buffalo Commercial, June 29, 1917.) 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 


The campaign oganization was completed before Saturday, June 16th, and at a mass meeting 
on that Saturday night at Elmwood Music Hall the project was formally launched. Speeches 
were made by Mayor Fuhrmann, the Rev. Newell Dwight Hillis of Brooklyn, one of America's 
best pulpit orators, and by Baroness Huard, who related some of her personal experiences when 
driven from her home in northern France by German invaders. 

On Monday the team captains began their quest for subscriptions, and the week was enlivened 
with noonday luncheons and team novelties. A dinner of very generous proportions was held 
prior to the campaign, and another dinner, the prerequisite obligation of each guest being a $10,000 
contribution, was held during the campaign, and the drive concluded with the money in hand, 
at an enthusiastic spread held at the Hotel Statler on Monday evening, June 25th. George P. 
Keating served as toastmaster at the final dinner, and speeches were made by Chairman Pomeroy, 

Parade n< Red Cross Workers, Mav, 1918 

Mayor Fuhrmann, Noel Marshall of Toronto, Walter P. Cooke, Roscoe R. Mitchell, A. H. Whit- 
ford of the Y. M. C. A., John D. Wells, of the Buffalo Evening News, and the Rev. Dr. Andrew 
V. V. Raymond. At the conclusion of the dinner. Dr. Edward J. Meyer presented to Robert W. 
Pomeroy a large loving cup. It came to the chairman as an expression of the esteem of his cap- 
tains and as a token of good fellowship which grew and bloomed and shed a fairer radiance in the 
more arduous days which followed. The cup was inscribed : 

"Robert W. Pomeroy 

President Buffalo Citizens' Committee 

Red Cross Campaign, June 18-25, 1917 

From His Co-Workers." 

The complete team reports handed in that night showed : 

Division A— Evan Hollister, chairman. Team No. 1, Capt. Hollister, $78,348; No. 2, Charles L. Gurney, $49,425; 
No. 3, Charles R. Huntley, $48,363; No. 4, Ralph C. Hudson, $41,524: No. 5, C. H. McCullough, Jr., $83,509; 
No. 6, George F. Rand, $72,415.75; No. 7, Robert K. Root, $42,650.50; No. 8, Arnold B. Watson, $44,022.46; 
No. 9, Clinton R. WyckofF, $45,949. Division Total, $505,687.16. 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 

Scene at Lafayette Square 

Ceremony attached to unveiling of Red Cross Flag 

Division B — Dr. Conrad E. Wettlaufer, chairman. Team No. 11, James H. McNulty, $45,516; No. 13, Mayor Louis 

P. Fuhrmann, $48,079.75; No. 14, William E. Robertson, $25,671.55; No. 15, Kenneth W. Waiters, $26,064.50; 

No. 16, Henry P. Werner, $47,590.37; No. 17, Dr. Wettlaufer, $162,732.32; No. 18, Frank Winch, $29,804. 

Division Total, $395,458.49. 
Division C— M. S. Tremaine, chairman. Team 21, Capt. Tremaine, $27,806; No. 22, Herbert E. Crouch, $47,812.10; 

No. 23, E. B. Eggert, $48,975; No. 24, Nesbit Grammar, $34,837; No. 25, William H. Hill, $60,913.38; No. 26; 

Clark L. Ingham, $24,716.10; No. 27, T. M. Pomeroy, $31,347.01; No. 28, H. T. Ramsdell, $52,584.40; special 

gifts to credit of Division C, $50,000. Division Total, $327,944.98. 
Division D— Dr. Edw. J. Meyer, chairman. Team No. 31, Capt. Meyer, $102,681.50; No. 32, Gerrit B. Lansing, 

$26,114; No. 33, Le Grand De Graff, $69,999.50; No. 34, Frank H. Goodyear, $50,230.54; No. 35, Henry May, 

$75,190.29; No. 36, B. C. Oliphant, $25,451; No. 37, Roswell Park, $38,452; No. 38, Frank Ruszkiewicz, $13,368; 

No. 39, Harry Yates, $51 ,297. Division Total, $409,216.89. 

Total $1,895,089.89 

Special contribution 5,000.00 

Buffalo Base Hospital Fund 100,000.00 

Grand Total $2,000,089.89 

Subsequently this total was increased somewhat by delayed subscriptions. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 103 


ON the 16th day of October, 1917, Albert H. Wiggin, Federal Fuel Administrator for New 
York State, appointed Elliott C. McDougal of Buffalo, Federal Fuel Administrator for 
Erie County. Mr. McDougal knew nothing about the fuel business and suggested that 
it would be better to appoint an experienced Buffalo coal jobber who also was familiar with trans- 
portation problems. He was told his suggestion was not in accordance with the policy of the 
Government; that any material interest in the coal business would be considered a disqualifica- 
tion for the office. He then accepted. 

He appointed as his first deputy Mr. W. A. McDougal, who had enjoyed practical experience 
in buying and using bituminous coal as a manufacturer and who was familiar with transportation 
conditions and practices. Unfortunately the first deputy resigned his office and left the city 
before the winter was well begun. The office of the Administrator for Erie County was opened 
in the Prudential Building on October 27th, 1917, with a small force under charge of Miss M. 
Kathryn Kelly as chief clerk. During the first few weeks the work was not heavy. Its three 
principal branches were : 

The procuring of bituminous coal for manufacturers and others who could not get supplies, 
either because they had not made contracts, or because the dealers with whom they had made 
contracts could not deliver the coal; furnishing coal for the City of Buffalo, for the pumping 
station and other municipal uses, and supplying the public schools and other public offices where, 
as a rule, anthracite coal was burned. 

The Fuel Administrator undertook to procure hard coal for domestic consumption, many 
householders being unable to get coal to heat their homes. During the first few weeks the orders 
of this kind which the fuel office handled did not average more than forty per day. 

The supervision and restriction of electric lighting in accordance with instructions and rulings 
from Washington, which were frequently changed, was also handled from the Fuel Administra- 
tor's office. That work was started on November 19, 1917. Controlling of electric lighting 
brought with it many difficulties. Some of the regulations received from Washington either were 
not well considered or were not applicable to Buffalo, but had to be enforced until they could be 
amended or rescinded. While our citizens as a whole showed a disposition to obey the law, even 
at a considerable sacrifice, there were a few persistent offenders who had to be disciplined by the 
shutting off of their electric current before they could be brought to realize that the law must be 
obeyed. In this work the office had the very best of co-operation from the Buffalo General Elec- 
tric Company, which allowed two of its best men to be appointed deputy fuel administrators 
that they might be able to give efficient assistance. 

In connection with every one of these duties, the office was constantly called upon for rulings 
and opinions, many of which questions had to be submitted to the State Fuel Administrator of 
New York and by him in turn to Washington, causing delays which at times were damaging to 
the questioners. The Erie County Fuel Administrator's office incessantly tried to impress upon 
the State Fuel Administration that matters should be handled promptly as they came up and 
that the office could not properly be run unless the Erie County Fuel Administrator was allowed 
to use his common sense in ordinary matters and to act upon them at once without delay. It 
was at first hard to get authority from Washington along these lines but in this respect the situa- 
tion gradually improved. 

Soon after the office was fairly under way the weather became very severe and continued so. 
Because of the continued snow storms and extreme cold, the coal supply was less than one-half 
of normal, while the consumption was greater than normal. Many domestic consumers, especially 
those who lived from hand to mouth and made no provision for the future, became panic-stricken. 

104 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

About the middle of January the crowd of appHcants, which had been growing for some time, 
became a mob which required the assistance of the police to keep in order. Women stood in Hne 
for hours waiting for their turn for orders. The system of handling orders required that after 
an application for coal had been made, the name should be sent to a police station and the house 
visited by a police officer to be sure that the coal was actually needed. Then it was reported back 
to the Fuel Administrator's office and the order issued. While this system worked fairly well 
when orders were light, it caused great delay, confusion and hardship when orders were heavy. 

The situation became so serious that at the suggestion of the Fuel Administrator Mayor Buck 
called a conference at his office on January 20 at which were present Mayor Buck, Chief of Police 
Girvin, representatives of miners and shippers, jobbers and men who controlled coal trestles, 
other citizens, and the United States Fuel Administrator for Erie County. At that conference 
it was decided that the Fuel Office would put clerks in every police station in the city so that appli- 
cants for coal, instead of being obliged to come down town, could go to the police stations in their 
own precincts. Chief Girvin said the police would promptly investigate the cases and report 
back and that orders for coal could then go out immediately direct from the clerk at the police 
station. The clerks were placed in the station houses on January 21, 1918. The record days for 
orders were: .January 21, 22, 23, 24 and 25, on all of which days an average of about four thousand 
a day was handled. Too much acknowledgment cannot be made of the splendid work of the 
police during that time of stress. Their co-operation saved the situation. Without it the Fuel 
Office would have been helpless. 

For some time the weather continued severe. About the middle of February it had consider- 
ably moderated. Then the Fuel Office commenced to reduce the forces at the station houses. 
Next it closed two or three of the stations very near the downtown Fuel Administrator's office, 
handling the orders from there. By the first part of March all of the stations were closed, and the 
weather continuing mild and the coal supply improving, the applications dropped off fast. By 
March 5, 1918, the office stopped issuing orders. By April 1 the main difficulties of the domestic 
situation were over. 

Bituminous coal still continued to be scarce, the situation having been aggravated by the fact 
that on January 12, 1917, the Fuel Administration at Washington had ordered bituminous coal 
diverted from Buffalo to Boston, which practically shut off the best sources of supply. We had 
been short all the winter. This new order made the condition much worse. 

Village and country districts suffered even more than Buffalo. While special deputy adminis- 
trators were appointed to care for their needs, it was harder than in Buffalo to get coal delivered 
on track ready for the local dealers to distribute. Many country stations waited weeks for the 
one car of coal. (Continued in Chapter XLIX.) 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 105 


A MERiCA's entrance into the war, coupled with another event of world-wide importance in the 
ZA early days of 1917 had given a new direction to the great struggle. 
■*- -^-The development of the vast machinery of registration and selection, and the knowledge that 
it was going to reach into the homes and draw therefrom the youth of the country, laid a check 
upon the care-free indifference of the people. We no longer looked at Europe through the eyes 
of a disinterested spectator. Buffalo fathers and mothers grew serious, and boys grew anxious. 
The day of real sacrifices had arrived. As the draft boards sweltered through July, wrestling 
with the intricacies of the selective service, and slowly solving its problems, Buffalonians focused 
attention on the events in Europe. The entire nation was likewise engaged. Every mother, 
every father, and sister and brother, every family which numbered a member in the draft, began 
not unnaturally, to speculate on the possible duration of the war, possible extent of our partici- 
pation, and the possible strength of the contending forces then engaged on the battle fronts of 

White Books and Blue Books had been written, telling the world from whence the war had 
come. Red books could have been wi-itten telling of its toll. These books and manifestos had 
not cleared the atmosphere, and the issue, to the American people, was still clouded and entangled. 
Germany claimed to be fighting a defensive war, yet her agencies of war were agencies of bar- 
barism, panoplied and equipped with all the inventions for the destruction of human life which 
modern ingenuity could devise, and were running ruthlessly on sea and land. 

France and England claimed to be fighting the cause of Democracy and freedom against autoc- 
racy and military aggression; and yet, they were allied with the Government of Russia, an abso- 
lute despotism, notorious throughout the world for its suppression of human rights and individual 

The first great event of 1917 was America's entrance into the war; the second was the over- 
throw of the Russian autocracy. The moral handicap of trying to fight a war for freedom in 
alliance with the chief enemy of freedom was removed when the government of the Czar fell. 
England and France eventually lost an ally but gained a moral issue. The substantiality of the 
Allies' claim to be fighting for Democracy was then established by America's participation, and 
the declaration of President Wilson that our continuation in the war was to last until "all 
the world was made safe for Democracy." 

Those two events gave to the people a clearer knowledge of the issues of the war and the righte- 
ousness of the Allies' cause. The people continued, however, to look with apprehension on the 
changes that were taking place in the new Republic of Russia. Her weakening military strength 
meant that America must contribute more than was at first expected. Fathers and mothers, 
when the call came to their homes, gladly gave up their sons. It is needless to say they wished 
it were otherwise, but they were willing to have their boys take their places with other boys, and 
do their share. Mothers tearfully saw them go to the draft board headquarters to take their 
physical examinations. Their hearts were breaking but they held their heads high. Women and 
men prayed mightily in those days for a termination of the struggle. 

At that time attention began to center on events transpiring at Berlin. During the month of 
.July the German Chancellor Von Bethmann-Hollweg resigned and Michaelis came into office — 
the first internal disturbance Germany experienced. It may or may not have been a real dis- 
turbance. The Reichstag refused to vote the war credits until some time after Michaelis came 
into office, but passed what became known as the Reichstag Resolutions of 1917. Some believed 
that these internal troubles were occasioned by the war preparations going on in this country, 
and the determination of America to have "force to the bitter end." 

106 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

The Pope apparently felt the time had arrived for peace. On August 15th His Holiness sent 
a note to all the Powers, making a strong appeal to them to bring the war to a close on the basis 
of mutual concessions. Despite the fact that Buffalo boys were then going through their physical 
examinations for military service, and family ties were about to be severed, Buffalonians had 
smelt the smoke of battle. No peace save the surrender of the Hohenzollern War Party would 
be an acceptable peace. The whole country voiced that sentiment. It was not an easy decision; 
but it was patriotic, and it was unmistakable. On August 27th, President Wilson replied* ex- 
pressing the conviction that peace could not be negotiated with the then rulers of the German 
people, and declining the Pope's invitation. 

The peace proposal, which seemingly came at the most opportune moment presented up to that 
time, being swept away, we turned again to war work. Food and fuel control systems became 
operative. Hustle was the slogan of the draft boards. The call came for additional men to aug- 
ment Pershing's force, and the people gradually but surely and irrevocably settled into the deter- 
mination of irresistible war, no matter what its cost in money and men. The first of August found 
the draft boards making their first physical examination. Before the end of the month, the quota 
of each Buffalo board for the first call was ready. On August 29th the members of the boards in 
Buffalo and Erie County received orders from Adjutant General Stotesbury to call five per cent, 
of their first quota for entrainment on September 5th. This, the first order for induction of men 
into the national army through the selective service system, naturally occasioned a general interest. 
The number from each board was necessarily small. No local district sent more than 20 men 
in that first call. Each board had 40 per cent, of its quota ready. Of course, it would have been 
proper and possible to send the first men according to their draft number, but most of the boards 
submitted the question to the men themselves, and in every board more than a sufficient number 
volunteered to meet the call. There was always present in those days a possibility, in the minds 
of the people at least, that something unforeseen might happen and end the war. Accordingly, 
there was no particular desire on the part of any great number of the drafted men to leave for 
camp. The national guardsmen, trained soldiers, were still here, and that fact created a question 
in many minds as to whether or not the Government would need many drafted men. It is ap- 
parent, therefore, that the original five per cent of selective service men who stepped forward to 
make up the first contingent were in reality selective service volunteers. Information began to 
filter through that, possibly, the Government wanted a small number at the camps for early 
training as non-commissioned officers. And that, it later developed, was the reason for calling 
a small number in advance of the first 40 per cent, of the contemplated army. 

* In part President Wilson said in his reply to Pope Benedict XV: 

"The object of this war is to deliver the free peoples of the world from the menace and the actual power of a vast military establishment con- 
trolled by an irresponsible Government which, having secretly planned to dominate the world, proceeded to carry the plan out without regard 
either to the sacred obligations of treaty or the long-established practices and long-cherished principles of international action and honor; which 
chose its own time for the war; delivered its blow fiercely and suddenly; stopped at no barrier either of law or of mercy; swept a whole continent 
within the tide of blood — not the blood of soldiers only, but the blood of innocent women and children also and of the helpless poor; and now 
stands balked but not defeated, the enemy of four-fifths of the world. This power is not the German people. It is the ruthless master of the Ger- 
man people. * * * To deal with such a power by way of peace upon the plan proposed by His Holiness the Pope would, so tar as we can see, 
involve a recuperation of its strength and a renewal of its policy; would make it necessary to create a permanent hostile combination of nations 
against the German people, who are its instruments; and would result in abandoning the new-born Russia to the intrigue, the manifold subtle inter- 
ference, and the certain counter-revolution which would be attempted by all the malign influences to which the German Government has of late 
accustomed the world. Can peace be based upon a restitution of its power or upon any word of honor it could pledge in a treaty of settlement 
and accommodation ? * * * The test, therefore, of every plan of peace is this: Is it based upon the faith of all the peoples involved or merely 
upon the word of an ambitious and intriguing Government, on the one band, and of a group of free peoples, on the other? This is a test which 
goes to the root of the matter; and it is the test which must be applied * * * We cannot take the word of the present rulers of Germany as 
a guarantee of anything that is to endure, unless explicitly supported by such conclusive evidence of the will and purpose of the German people 
themselves as the other peoples of the world would be justified in accepting." 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 



ON June 26th, 1917, the First Ai-my Division of the American Expeditionary Forces arrived 
in France. The news of the arrival abroad thrilled Buffalonians at home. National guards- 
men immediately stirred about in anticipation of an early departure. The members of the 
local regiments having had experience on the Mexican border viewed themselves, and we looked 
upon them, as trained men of war. They were bronzed, carried their equipment in a soldierly 
way, could keep step, and were experienced in the use of firearms. The average man of that 
period possessed a thorough conviction that the members of the 74th Infantry, the 3d Artillery 
and Troop I were then in complete readiness for front line fighting. All that remained, in the 
judgment of the home folks, was a short training in the methods of trench warfare. The masses 
were just hearing of gas masks, and steel helmets and trench mortars, of tanks, machine gun nests 
and pill boxes. The guardsmen began to chafe at the task of guarding railroad bridges, elevators 
and the like. They were looking for action. 

Spring was rapidly merging into summer, draft boards were getting under way, and the new 
national army was already discernible rising in the distance, when word was passed around that 
•the entire National Guard was to be federalized. The thing of paramount importance there was 
in the fact that federalizing meant overseas service. Many had believed that the "regulars" 
would be sent overseas and the National Guard used in manning army posts here. Now the talk 
veered to the guardsmen going overseas while the drafted men would man the home posts. Though 
the order for federalization was expected about July 1st, it had not materialized at that time and 
the guardsmen fell back to their guard duty assignment. Those not so assigned continued to 
report at the local armories and secure leave from day to day. 

On July 1st an accident at Niagara Falls brought the guardsmen into favorable prominence. 
A stretch of earth south of the cantilever bridge on the line of the Gorge Railway at Niagara 
Falls, just where the track slopes toward the Whirlpool Rapids, disintegrated and dropped a 

Lompany 1, 74tn Kegiment, Mess Time at Kenilworth 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 109 

loaded trolley car into the river. Many were killed in the crashing of the car. Others were 
drowned. Soldiers on guard at the bridge were the first to see the accident. A half dozen guards- 
men hurriedly rendered assistance. Private Joseph Crowley of the 74th Infantry was first to 
give aid to the survivors and engage in the work of rescue. He climbed over the upturned trucks 
and into the shallow water where he dragged victims through a window and stood waist deep 
holding two unconscious women above the water. He remained at his post until the rescuing 
party could give assistance. Crowley was aided in the work by Private McCue and Corporal 
Poison, all of whom were commended for distinguished service. 

On July 10th, President Wilson issued the proclamation drafting the national guardsmen into 
the army of the United States, and providing for their mobilization. The President fixed August 
5th as the date on which all national guardsmen would be formally taken into the United States 
service. Orders issued by the Governor* through Adjutant General Stotesbury provided for the 
mobilization of the 3d Artillery and Troop I on July 12th. On the same day. General O'Ryan 
issued orders! for the care of the armories after the departure of the old regiments. The 74th 
Infantry had been federalized prior to that period, and the work was then directed to the con- 
struction of a temporary camp until such time as the troops should be ordered to a national train- 
ing camp. Considerable time was spent in recruiting work to bring the regiments up to full 
strength, but it was not then very difficult to get men. The draft machinery was in motion. 
Many Buffalo boys felt they would rather go with a Buffalo unit than into the army through the 
selective service route. Accordingly the regiments filled rapidly. Members of the 3d Artillery 
and of Troop I reported daily at their armories on Masten Street and Delavan Avenue respec- 
tively. About August 1st a detachment from the 74th and another from the 3d Artillery were 
named to go to Spartanburg to aid in preparing the camp for the guardsmen soon to be mobilized 
into an army division at that point. A few days later, Captain Bradley Goodyear of the 3d Artil- 
lery was detached and ordered to Fort Sill, Oklahoma, for a course in artillery training. 


The Adjutant General's Office Albany, July 12, 1917. 

General Orders No. 35 

I. The President of the United States, by virtue of the authority vested in him by the Constitution and Laws of the United States, having 
called, through the Governor of the State of New York, into the service of the United States, as, of and from July 15th, 1917, all members of the 
National Guard and all enlisted members of the National Guard Reserve of this State, who are not now in the service of the United States, except 
members of Staff Corps and Departments not included in the personnel of tactical organizations and except such officers of the National Guard 
as have been or may be specifically notified by his authority that they will not be affected by said call, and the Commanding General, Eastern 
Department having designated the herinafter-mentioned organizations of the National Guard of this State, including the enlisted personnel of the 
National Guard Reserve as included in said call, and having designated the hour, date and place of assembly pursuant to said call, as hereinafter 
indicated, the Commanding General, New York Division, will cause the following organizations of the National Guard of this State to be assembled 
at their respective armories for initial muster into the service of the United States on Monday, July 16. 1917, at 9 o'clock A. M., except those 
organizations now engaged in guarding public utilities under orders of the Governor, which will "assemble at the same time and will be mustered at 
the stations where now on duty, as hereinafter indicated, and except the 15th N. Y. Infantry and 4th N. Y. Field Hospital, which will be assembled 
at the same time at Camp Whitman, N. Y., for initial muster, and which last two named organizations will be assembled at their respective home 
stations on July 16. 1917, in ample time to arrive at Camp Whitman by 9 o'clock A. M. on that date. 

II. All organizations assembled for initial muster under this order will have their company records and unserviceable property in immediate 
readiness for inspection by mustering officer. Every effort will be made to prevent absentees from initial muster and to promote normal induction 
into Federal service. 

III. In accordance with memorandum from Headquarters Eastern Department, organizations assembled for initial muster under this order 
at company, battalion or regimental armories are authorized to arrange for messing and sleeping such number of the men of their command stationed 
at said armories as may be necessary outside of the armories. Under the same authority, commutation of ration at the rate of seventy-five cents 
per day may be provided wherever troops cannot be messed in company or larger messes. 

IV. Special Regulation No. 55. Mobilization of the National Guard, requires all Federal property in the State to be transferred to the United 
States when the National Guard is called into Federal service. There are certain classes of property, however, that are not needed by the Federal 
Government at this time, and such articles should not be brought into the United States service with the National Guard. No blue uniforms will 
be transferred with organizations. No target material will be so transferred. If, in special cases, such material is needed, authority for transfer 
will be granted. No Coast Artillery material (dummy armament, etc.) will be transferred. Every article of Federal property comprising the field 
equipment fas shown by Circular No. 10, Militia Bureau, 1916) will be transferred to the United States. Prompt settlement by supply officers 
with the State authorities of transfers of property to Federal service is imperative. All adjustments of property accountability will be made be- 
tween the date of the call and date troops are moved to concentration camp. Attention is invited to General Orders No. 24, this office, dated 
June 6, 1917. 

By command of the Governor: 
Official: Louis W. Stotesbury, 

The Adjutant General. 

New York, July 12, 1917. 
General Orders No. II 

I. In accordance with telegraphic instructions of this date from the Adjutant General of the State, and pursuant to G. O. 35, A. G. O., 1917, 
organizations of the National Guard will assemble at their several stations, as specified, preparatory to initial muster into the service of the United 
States, on Monday, July 16. 1917, at 9 o'clock A. M. The provisions of Special Regulations No. 55, Mobilization of the National Guard, 1917, 
will obtain. 

II. Upon the assembly of organizations at armories, the guards there maintained will stand relieved from duty under State orders, as of July 
15, 1917. 

III. By direction of The Adjutant General, when armories are vacated by troops drafted into the service of the United States, Commanding 
Officers of depot units will detail the appropriate number of their respective commands for the protection of armories, in accordance with G. O. 8, 
D., 1917. (1116) 

By Command of Major General O'Ryan. 
Official: H. H. Bandholtz, 

Lieut. Col., U. S. Infly., D. O. L., .■\eling Chief of Staff. 

110 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

On August 3d, Colonel Arthur C. Kemp, 74th Infantry, designated Company I to establish 
a camp at the Kenilworth rifle range and begin the schooling of non-commissioned officers. Cap- 
tain John H. Kneubel was placed in charge of the post. By August 14th all the companies of the 
old 74th were encamped on the Kenilworth range. Practically all the men, including the out-of- 
town boys got into camp on the evening of the 13th of August, in time to encounter a sweeping 
rain storm. Their first night under canvas was a wet one. 

Police Chief Martin and Sheriff Stengel swore in extra police officers to take up the work of 
guarding elevators and munition plants, as the soldiers were withdrawn. The detachments from 
Olean, Westfield, Jamestown, Tonawanda and other places where 74th boys had been on guard 
moved to Kenilworth amid the plaudits of the people at various points along the route. Kenil- 
worth soon became a city of tents. The 74th was there assembled as the 102d U. S. Infantry. 

On August 18th information was given out at Washington that the 26th Division, composed of 
New England guardsmen, and the 42d Division composed largely of New York City guardsmen, 
prominent in which was the "Fighting Sixty-Ninth" — the New York Irish regiment — would 
soon be sent to France. Buffalo had acquired a very intense interest in the 69th regiment by 
reason of the fact that Captain William J. Donovan of Troop I had been promoted — commissioned 
Major and assigned to the command of a battalion of the old 69th, renamed the 165th Infantry 
and attached to the 42d "Rainbow Division." The news that guardsmen were going overseas 
made the Buffalo men eager to get to their training camp at Spartanburg, and the days spent at 
Kenilworth from that time on were anxious and dreary ones. Each day brought new hope for 
the order to move. But day after day passed and the days became weeks, while Kenilworth 
still held them. Up in the old 65th Armory, where the members of the 3d Artillery, soon to be- 
come the 106th Field Artillery, were quartered, the same spirit of restlessness was shown. While 
the draft board's work was rushed, and the governmental agencies for the creation of the selective 
service army moved along with the speed of an airship, time hung heavily on the border-trained 
troops of the New York National Guard at Kenilworth and in the Buffalo armories. 

The monotony of camp life, however, found some interruptions. Frank B. Baird entertained 
the officers and men of Buffalo Base Hospital Unit No. 23 at dinner at the Buffalo Club on the 
evening of August 28th. The officers of the 74th and the 3d were also his guests on that occasion. 
At the armories, chaplains and Y. M. C. A. workers filled in the days and hours with various forms 
of amusement. 

On August 29th Colonel Kemp received word to proceed to Spartanburg as soon as transpor- 
tation could be furnished and Buffalo grew excited. The camps and armories began to crowd 
up at all hours of the day with relatives and friends of the soldiers and the committees in charge 
of farewell ceremonies became active. The Festival of Light and Song was held on August 31st. 
On September 1st, Chairman Walter S. Goodale called his committee together to complete final 
arrangements for the departure of the men. The Committee planned a fitting farewell parade 
in which the entire city could participate. Colonel Kemp reported repeatedly at that time, the 
inability of the regiment to secure transportation accommodations. The review of the regiment 
by Mayor Fuhrmann and the members of the Council at the Country Club, after several post- 
ponements, was finally held on Wednesday, September 5th. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 111 



A UGUST 31, 1917, proved to be a bright summer day in Buffalo. When the shadows of night 

/\ came on, a shght breeze off the lake drove away the last lingering heatwaves of the mid- 

■*- -*- Summer sun and left us a balmy, cool, refreshing evening. The day had been set apart by 

the City to give expression in a formal manner, with music and song, to the city's pride in her 

citizen-soldiers, and extend to them a formal farewell. 

The Little Meadow at Delaware Park, setting as it does a fairy garden amid the giant old trees 
of Buffalo's beautiful breathing space, was illuminated on that particular night, in every nook and 
corner, by innumerable though partly hidden and subdued lights. Buffalonians by the thousands 
were scattered on the benches and on the grass under the trees. Every path leading to Little 
Meadow was thronged with earnest citizens eager to extend the hand of fellowship to the depart- 
ing soldiers. The night was cool and still, and, stepping lightly over the velvety lawn, the immense 
audience, moving in almost reverent attention did not break the forest silence. The suiToundings 
and the atmosphere in which the Festival was held added immeasurably to its success. 

The evening's program had run through, the departing speech had been delivered, the 
musical numbers had been rendered and the presentations had been made when the most impres- 
sive feature of the evening's program, an added feature, was presented. A woman clad in 
immaculate white stepped out on the platform, and the strains of the popular song of the hour, 
"There's a Long, Long, Trail" broke the stillness of the woods. Her voice was clear and the 
notes of her song floated over the night air and found a hundred echoes in the nooks and ravines 
around the lake. When she concluded, fifty thousand voices acclaimed their appreciation of the 
singer and her song. The singer was Mrs. George B. Barrell. She had planned the great ceremonial 
had led the work from its inception, and, in the absence through illness of the soloist of the even- 
ing, had herself stepped into the breach and completed the programme in a grandeur that had 
not been anticipated. Thousands of soldiers stood up on the lawn and cheered again and again 
and then all joined in — 


Nights are growing very lonely, All night long I hear you calling. 

Days are very long. Calling sweet and low. 

I'm a-growing weary only, Seem to hear your footsteps falling, 

List'ning for your song. Ev'ry where I go. 

Old remembrances are thronging thro ' my memory, Tho ' the road between us stretches many a weary mile, 

Till it seems the world is full of dreams I forget that you're not with me yet, 

Just to call you back to me. When I think I see you smile. 

There's a long, long trail a winding, 

Into the land of my dreams. 
Where the nightingales are singing, 

And a white moon beams. 
There's a long, long night of waiting, 

Until my dreams all come true; 
Till the day when I'll be going down, 

That long, long trail with you. 

— Words by Sloddard Ki)ig. Music by Zo ElliotU 


Buffalo's tribute to her men and women, who, by the dedication of their lives to the 
service of our country, bring honor to their City. — From Official Program. 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 

^m^^j/k'^^M:M^>^m^'. '' 




Saluting the Colors at Country Club Review 
74th on March to Country Club for Final Review, September 10, 1917 
Reviewing Party on Country Club Grounds— Fuhrmann, Kreinheder, Heald, Hill, Malone, Sweeney 
Company E on Practice March at Kenilworth 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 113 

Song and Light was given as a tribute to the National Guardsmen. The spirit that prompted 
the undertaking and guided the efforts of the Committee in charge was born of a desire that the 
citizens of Buffalo might gather and give expression to the affection and family interest with 
which they surrounded the men and women going out to represent Buffalo at the front; to affirm 
together their faith in the righteousness of the cause, and their belief in the power of the Spirit of 
Ciod to sustain our Arms in the mighty conflict. The program was planned and executed in the 
hope that it might serve the people of the Community on such an occasion. 

Mayor Fuhrmann issued a proclamation as follows: 

"Buffalo is realizing more clearly every day the large part we are to play as a city in the carrying on of the war. 
Our troops, our two regiments, the men soon to be called into the service, our naval militia, and the base hospital 
unit, will represent us at the front, and it is fitting that as a community we should have the opportunity of 
expressing our appreciation of the honor due these men and women, and of uniting in a farewell to them. The 
President of the United States has himself expressed a desire that some appropriate recognition be accorded them, 
and, in this desire, I am sure that all our citizens will concur. The evening of August .31st has been set apart for 
such a civic ceremonial, to be held in Delaware Park. While it is to be regretted that, owing to military exigencies, 
all of our troops may not be present, this should not prevent us from honoring those who are about to make such 
great sacrifices for their country, and all citizens of Buffalo are urged to attend and participate, that those who 
have gone and are going may feel the united support and affection of their home city." 

The Little Meadow, with its broad expanse of lawn, completely surrounded, as it is, with trees, 
was an ideal location for the ceremony. The platform for band, speakers. Community Chorus, 
and a children's chorus of five hundred, was erected at the eastern end of the enclosure and was 
the climax of the lighting plan. Against the background of trees, with the great wheel of light 
in the centre and the many lanterns and screens of curious design and color combination on either 
side, it was a beautiful picture. All about the Little Meadow in the trees hung great lanterns 
some eight and ten feet high, of Mr. Bragdon's design and through the Park from Lincoln Parkway 
and Rumsey Road, hundreds of small .Japanese lanterns served as guides on the pathways lead- 
ing to the scene of the Ceremony. 

The regiments marched into the park from different directions, and were seated, at the request 
of their Commanding Officers, on the ground, in a space reserved for them, directly in front 
of the platform. 

Excerpts* from Buffalo newspapers of the following day give an excellent impression of the 
evening. An account, however, would be incomplete without speaking of the ready and splendid 
cooperation met with during the days of preparation and carrying-out of the plans. Members of 
the Park, Police, and Fire Departments and of the City Bureau of Weights and Mea.sures were 
untiring in their assistance; the Red Cross and many firms of the city carried the hundreds of 

*THE FIRST PAREWELIx— From Buffalo Enquirer 

Nu more impressive scene was ever witnessed in Buffalo than that last night when upwards of 50,000 men, women, and children participated in 

the program at Delaware park in honor of those citizens who are soon to leave to accept roles in the great drama that is being enacted across 

the Atlantic. Seated on the ground in a section reserved for them, the regiments of infantry and artillery, the hospital units and the Red Cross 

nurses heard and saw the great patriotic demonstration which they will carry with them as long as they live. It was a scene never to be forgotten. 


A full moon climbing through heavy clouds gave the final touch of splendor to a setting which made the meadow a fairyland and won success 
for the City Ceremonial of Song and Light at Delaware Park last night. There was a touch of awed surprise in the attitude of the great crowd 
that filled the meadow to overflowing when the first note of music burst forth and song and light became a harmonious whole. 

Paths between the trees were transformed into lantern-lined vistas. The lanterns beckoned everywhere. They pointed the way for the throngs 
that flowed through every entrance toward the glowing center of the celebration. 

The 74th infantry, the 3rd artillery, and the base hospital unit faced the dark green wall of the trees before which rose in a profusion of light 
and color the stand for members of the Community Chorus. All the women were in white, while in front, below the rostrum upon which Director 
Harry Barnhart directed the accompaniment and chorus, were grouped the children. 

+ + + 

The police attempted to estimate the size of the crowd, but estimates were futile. * * * There may have been .50,000 people. It was the biggest 
crowd that ever attended a public celebration in Buffalo 

* * * 

Colonel Arthur Kemp of the 74th infantry, in accepting the kits for his men and thanking the Red Cross for them, said; "These kits will be a 
constant reminder of this great farewell and will bring back the God Bless You of Mayor Fulirmann as given to-night in behalf of the whole city." 

When 3,000 soldiers of Buffalo's various military units marched out of Delaware Park last night they carried with them the cheers and well 
wishes of 60,000 persons who had come to the park to witness the song and light festival arranged as a farewell to the boys in khaki. Last night's 
celebration — the largest attended of any public affair in Buffalo — was splendidly staged and successful in every detail. 

The meadow and paths surrounding were tilled to overflowing. 'There was that hesitancy that marks the step in the dark. For once the bois- 
terous laughter was stilled; the character of the entertainment seemed to strike the thousands — leaving them silent and awed. 


None who participated in the ceremony of light and song at the Little Meadow in Delaware Park last night will ever forget the beauty, splendor 
and the patriotism of the occasion. It was a magnificent spectacle, artistically arranged and consummated by an outpouring of more than 60,000 
people, who with cheers and songs showed their love and loyalty to the flag and its defenders. Affairs of that kind will leave their imprint alike 
on soldier and civilian and Buffalo has reason to be proud of the occasion and above all they are proud, as they showed last night, of the boys in 
whose honor it was held. 

{Continued on page 113.) 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 

Buffalo Bids Good-By to Old 74th Regiment. Through Lanes of Cheering Thousands the Troops Marched Away 

Upper — Mayor Fuhrmann is shown at the head of the hne; next, Councilmen Heald, Hill. Kreinheder, Malone, from left to right; 
Councilman Heald is shown waving his hand. Colonel Arthur Kemp, Adjutant Ralph K. Robertson and staff 

Lower — The 74th Regiment off to war 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 115 

children to and from rehearsals and the performance itself; the Albright Art Gallery allowed the 
Court to be used for the children's practising; and the Boy Scouts assumed full charge of the seating 
arrangements and ushering. It would be impossible to mention individually all those who gave 
of their time and energy, but an enthusiastic response to all requests for help was unfailing from 
everyone approached and all were eager to contribute and have some share in the city's God- 
speed to her sons and daughters. 

The Committee directly in charge consisted of Mrs. Chauncey J. Hamlin, Miss EfRe Burns, 
Mrs. George B. Barrell, Mrs. Henry Ware Sprague, Mrs. Walter P. Cooke, Mrs. A. -J. Elias, 
Mrs. William Moncrieff and Mrs. William A. Morgan. Following is the official program: 

"I See America go Singing to Her Destiny" Walt Whitman 

Buffalo Community Chorus Buffalo Park Band Children's Chorus 

Fanfare Harry Barnhart, Conductor Claude Bragdon, Master of Lights 

Military March — "America" Francis MacMillm 

Buffalo Park Band 
"America" — Everybody sing 

Invocation— Rev. John C. Ward, Chaplain 74th Regiment 

"Hail, Bright Abode" Wagner 

Chorus and Band 
Address by the Hon. Louis P. Fuhrmann 

Band Number— "Cortege du Serdare" Ippolitov Iwanov 

New Hymns of the People: 

"March! March!" Farwell 

"Our America" Stetson 

"These Things Shall Be" Griffes 

"New Hymn to Free Russia" Gretchaninow 

Chorus and Band 
Presentation of American Flag by Mrs. John Miller Horton, Regent, Buffalo Chapter, 

N. S. D. A. R. to the Base Hospital Unit 23, U. S. A. 
Presentation of Comfort Kits by Ansley Wilcox on behalf of the Buffalo Chapter, 
American Red Cross, to Members of the 3rd Field Artillery, the 74th Regiment and 
the Naval Militia. 
• Acceptance by Col. Kemp for the 74th Regiment, by Col. Howland for the 3d 
Field Artillery and Lieut. Bailey for the Naval Militia. 
Community Singing 

"The Heavens Are Telling The Glory of God" Haydn 

Double Trio, Chorus and Band 

"Ave Maria" Bach-Gounod 

tMary Ward Prentiss 

(a) "Spring Song" Riibenstein 

(6) "Lullaby" Stetson 

(c) "The Red, White and Blue". 

Children's Chorus 

"Pilgrim's Chorus" Wagner 

Community Chorus and Band 

"Hallelujah Chorus" — (from "The Messiah") Handel ■ 

Benediction— Rev. Walter F. Fornes, Chaplain 3d Field Artillery 
"STAR spangled banner" 

♦BUFFALO'S benediction— From The News 

The "Little Meadow", Delaware park, last evening was the scene of a gathering unique in Buffalo's history— an inspiring and unforeettable 
event — a festival of light and song. 

Conceived in the spirit of affection and pride in our soldier boys, its proponents witnessed the consummation of their desires— the tangible 
whole-hearted expression of the community's love and faith in our boys who are soon to go forth to fight for the loftiest ideals that ever entered 
the mind of man. 

Well and aptly chosen was the designation "Festival of Light and Song." Light is the symbol of truth: it is the torch of liberty 

And It is to uphold these principles— to establish truth and to intensify the love of liberty— that our boys have pledged themselves in the name 
oi the Nation. 

The "Festival of Light and Song"! * * * 

Wondrously carried out was the idea and a more inspiring and thrilling event, or one so full of deep feeling and meaning was never experienced 
by the community. 

To the boys who wore the uniform of service the gathering signified consecration to duty. 

To us it was as if we stood mentally and spiritually with uncovered heads as our boys go forth, bidding them Godspeed in their task 

It was Buffalo s benediction on her fighting sons. 

tOwing to illness at the last moment, Mrs. Prentiss was unable to sing and Mrs. Barrel! sang "The Long. Long Trail" The Audience and 
Chorus joined in singing the refrain. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 




Wednesday night, September 3d, 1917, the foundation men of the great national army 
left Buffalo — five per cent from each exemption district. From every corner of the city 
they assembled, surrounded by a cheering throng of relatives and friends as they prepared 
for the march to the station. The city committee provided an escort headed by mounted police and 
including a platoon of city firemen, the Home Defense Regiment, and the Police Reserves. Regi- 
mental bands took their allotted places in the line, and early evening saw the procession in motion 
down Main Street toward the railroad stations. Immense banners indicating that the ceremony 
was in honor of the departure of the first increments of The National Army waved at the head 
of the line. Chief Martin filled the post of grand marshal, and the members of the Council, 
headed by Mayor Fuhrmann, marched at the head of the escort. Along the route to the trains 
bombs were exploded high in the air and colored fire illuminated the route; crowds pressed from 
the walks into the streets, passed the cordon of police, some to slap the soldier boys on the back, 
wish them luck, imparting instructions which ran the gamut from "Take Berlin!" to "Bring 
back the Kaiser's whiskers!" 

Along the lines from the prancing horses of the mounted police in the van to the loiterers and 
stragglers at the end, floated the Stars and Stripes. Soldiers on the sidewalks stood at attention 
as the flags went by and civilians doffed their hats. We had all learned in that day to reverently 
salute the flag. It was dearer to us then as we saw it amid the storm clouds of war than it ever 
was back in the days of peace. Theretofore it had meant simply a token of our right to life, liberty 
and the pursuit of happiness; the emblem of American institutions and citizenship. On that 

Scene at a Draft Board Headquarters When Boys Were About to Leave 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 

Old 65th Regiment Getting Under Way 

Packing up equipment at Armory grounds 
Loading gun carriages on cars in railroad yards 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 119 

trying day, when the first contingent of Buffalo boys was marching away, all recognized that 
the flag had taken on a new significance. It was now a symbol of service. Men and women of 
Buffalo knew then the boys would have to march behind its folds and sleep beneath its sentinel 
stars on shell-torn fields. The throng along the line of march did not cheer. They were criticised 
the next day by the newspapers for their lack of enthusiasm. But their hearts were heavy. They 
were proud of those boys, but they idealized the horrors of war. Accordingly, they were silent. 
All had read the President's letter* to the new soldiers. 

The sun was sinking across the river as they gathered that day to see the boys off, and in the 
growing dusk it was not difficult to visualize the training camp — France — the trenches — the 
battlefields — the heroic sacrifices — the supreme sacrifice! It was not surprising that the people 
did not cheer when the boys were leaving. The bands struck up the "Old Grey Mare," and 
other catchy tunes of the hour, and the marchers put a "punch" into the parade. 

As they neared the train sheds they sang; "We Won't Come Back 'Till It's Over Over There. " 

Most people tried to be merry. But as the youngsters boarded the train mothers and sisters — • 
and fathers — wept. They may have shed tears of regret; perhaps they shed tears of pride and 
of glory. But they shed tears. The members of the draft boards marched at the head of their 
respective contingents. The station reached, they began calling the roll. Police tried to keep 
the passenger areas clear of the crowd. But the mothers demanded the last farewell, and no 
patrolman in the immense platoon of police — to their honor be it said — had the heart to deny 
them that right. Finally the board members, hopped from the trains, perspiration trickling from 
under their hat bands. Trainmen shouted, the crowd was pushed and hauled back and forth, 
bands were playing "America", and boys and mothers were still exchanging from car windows 
their good bye caresses as the heavy trains pulled out of the station. Buffalo had sent away its 
first contingent to the National Army of the United States, bound for Camp Dix, N. J. It was 
an historic day. 

Soon, however, scenes of that character became a common occurrence. Neighborhood celebra- 
tions were held as the various draft contingents departed. Banquets were given in many instances 
to the departing men. Knitting societies and relief associations equipped the boys with kits, 
sweaters, caps, scarfs and socks. On September 26th, more than 2,000 boys were sent away. And 
gradually it became a monthly affair. The departure of the big colored contingent was the occa- 
sion for an immense parade and a banquet at St. Stephen's Hall, arranged by the Rev. Henry 
A. Mooney and a committee of the draft board members with -James A. Ross as Chairman. 
Speeches were made by public officials and prominent colored citizens. Parades and dinners, 
aerial bombs and red fire illuminated the occasion. No contingent left Buffalo without a good-by 
celebration of some sort. 

*"To the soldiers of the national army: You are undertaking a great duty. The heart of the whole country is with you. Everything that you 
■do will be watched with the deepest interest and with the deepest solicitude, not only by those who are nearer and dearer to you, but by the whole 
nation besides. For this great war draws us all together, makes us all comrades and brothers, as all true Americans felt themselves to be when we 
first made good our national independence. 

'*The eyes of all the world will be upon you because you are in some special sense the soldiers of freedom. Let it be your pride therefore, to 
show all men everywhere not only what good soldiers you are, but also what good men you are, keeping yourselves fit and straight in everything 
and pure and clean through and through. Let us set for ourselves a standard so high that it will be a glory to live up to it, and then let us live up 
to it and add a new laurel to the crown of America. My affectionate confidence goes with you in every battle and every test. God keep and guide 
you. — WooDROw Wilson." 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 

t. /^A 


When Orders Came to Leave for Spartanburg 

Old 74th boys cheering the glad news of their departure 
Breaking camp, preparatory to departure 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 121 



A UGUST had given way to September and the falhng leaves announced the coming of Winter 
l\ before the old guardsmen finally boarded the cars for Spartanburg. On September 22d at 
-*■ -*- Kenilworth Field the 74th marched in its last Buffalo review. Brig. General George C. 
Fox, General Edgar B. Jewett, Lieut. Colonel Edmund P. Cottle, Maj. Lee H. Smith and 
August Schneider, who held the post of drum major for more than twenty-five years, were in 
the reviewing stand. Another mass meeting for a demonstration of loyalty, with Job Hedges as 
the principal speaker, several parades, and plenty of red fire, served to fill in the time through 
the latter part of September until the soldiers departed. 

After weeks of waiting, and innumerable hours of preparation by the farewell committee, the 
order finally came to the 3d Artillery Regiment to get under way. All the committee's plans 
went a-glimmering. The regiment was under way during the night of the 24th of September. 
Trucks rattled down Michigan Avenue to the Erie Station through the night, carrying equipment 
and supplies. No time was given for a formal parade nor did the people have an opportunity to 
say good-by.* The first section left early on the morning of September 25, and by one o'clock 
of that day the last section pulled away from Buffalo. Sirens on the fire tugs sounded their screech- 
ing farewells. Mayor Fuhrmann shook hands with Captain P. J. Keeler, in charge of the last sec- 
tion, and the regiment, destined to participate in the gi'eat barrages which finally swept the 
German Army across the Meuse, was rattling over the ties toward Spartanburg. 

Buffalo erected a towering monument of well wishes for her soldiers in the old 74th Regiment 
of Infantry when finally, on Saturday, September 29th, they left their home city en route to the 
western battlefront via Spartanburg, France and Belgium. Denied the opportunity to do honors 
to the Artillery boys, Buffalonians showered their well-wishes on the Infantry Regiment. Factory 
whistles, fire tug sirens and church bells joined in the tumult of sound which announced their 
departure. They marched down Main Street through lanes of thickly packed, sad-eyed, thou- 
sands. Buffalo had never before tendered such a demonstration to civilians or soldiers. The 
ceremony began in the early hours of the morning and lasted long into the afternoon when 
the last section of the train pulled out of the Lehigh Valley yards leaving heavy hearted 
thousands with nothing but the memory of khaki-coated marchers and tousled heads poked 
from car windows. 

It was estimated that more than 300,000 people thronged the streets along the line of march. 
The crowds began to assemble as early as eight o'clock, at which time the 74th men had been 
ordered to report at the armory, having spent their last night in Buffalo at home. Ropes strung 
along the curbs in front of the armory kept back the crush of thousands. At 9.30 the shrill call 
of the bugle sent the men scurrying into their company rooms to emerge a few minutes later 
with their marching equipment and packages. At 9.45 o'clock the regimental band gave a con- 
cert and the various companies formed on the main drill floor. 

Every man was there and the loyal guardsmen were proud of it for their voices lifted in the bars 
of " Hail, Hail, the Gang's all Here — What the Hell do we Care Now. " There was little of pathos 
there then. That came later. 

Shortly before 10 o'clock Chaplain .lohn C. Ward delivered a brief invocation and the men in 

*"It is unfortunate that the movement of the 3d artillery comes so unexpectedly that nothing in the way of an official send-olT can be arranged. 
The regiment will move so irregularly that it will be almost impossible even for the citizens to line the streets and give the boys a cheer. 

"The regiment will slip out of Buffalo and the vast majority will know nothing about it. War is a coldly businesslike proposition nowadays. 
Regiments leave their home stations for the front with little or no excitement on the part of the populace. An unsentimental war office has abolished 
gold lace, buliioned epaulettes and brilliant uniforms. Even the inspiriting colors have been abandoned. 

"But hearts still beat fast, and this going away to war is the stirring thing it has always been. There are the pangs of parting, the unspoken 
curse against the thing that drives a great free people into bloody arms; the hope they'll all come back and the wish that they'll acquit them- 
selves well and obtain their share of glory. We'd like to believe those guns of the Third will never be called on to speak their message of death 
and destruction, but this seems a wish doomed to unfulfillment. Our hope is then that the regiment does its duty well. We feel sure it will. All 
Buffalo will be waiting, watching, hoping brave things from her boys "over there." — Buffalo Commercial, September 24,1917. 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 

Off to War 

Old 74th marching from their armory for the last time 
First Battalion moving out 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 123 

khaki stood reverently with bowed heads. "Oh God. give us strength to serve Thee as soldiers 
of freedom," said the little chaplain. 

Then Col. Arthur Kemp, commanding; Lieut. Col. William R. Pooley, and staff marched out 
of the armory preceded by 200 members of the 74th Regiment Veterans ' Association and followed 
by the regiment. With salvo after salvo of cheers breaking from the crowds assembled along 
Prospect Park, the men marched over Connecticut Street to Prospect, thence to the Circle at 
Richmond Avenue where they were met by Grand Marshal .John Martin, Mayor Fuhrmann, 
Councilmen Charles M. Heald, Charles B. Hill, Arthur W. Kreinheder and John F. Malone, 
with the escort made up of firemen, police officers, home guardsmen, volunteer police patrolmen, 
the G. A. R. and various fraternal and other bodies in uniform. 

Shortly after eight o'clock the marching organizations gathered at the Circle and long before 
the time set to start the parade several thousand men had assembled at the points designated 
by the grand marshal. In front of the First Presbyterian Church Colonel Herbert I. Sackett 
formed his Home Defense Corps. About 1,000 men were in this section in their natty grey uni- 
forms. Major E. C. Shoemaker was in command of the first battalion, Captain Edward L. Jung 
led the second battalion, Captain Knight Neftel was at the head of the third battalion and Captain 
Harry S. Johnson led the battalion composed of companies from East Aurora, Depew, Tonawanda 
and two companies from the east side. 

G. A. R. members formed in line on the Porter Avenue side of the Circle. 

City firemen, about 500 strong, formed at the Jersey Street firehouse and marched around the 
Circle to their position in the line, Chief Bernard J. McConnell commanding. 

Knights of St. John, in full dress uniform, led by Colonel John L.Schwartz followed the Knights 
Templar and Scottish Rite Consistory, led by George K. Staples and William H. Ellis. A number 
of uniformed bodies were in that division. 

The policemen were at the head of the line and they formed the first division at North and 
Main Streets. At a few minutes after ten o'clock Grand Marshal John Martin gave the word to 
start. The parade moved out rapidly and in splendid formation. 

The Circle had been a busy place that morning. People in hundreds gathered there at an 
early hour. Lawns were trampled down in North Street by the surging multitude. 

In Main Street the crowd was indescribable. Atop buildings, hanging perilously out of win- 
dows, hectoring the police along the curb lines — the thousands waved flags, handkerchiefs and 
wafted good-bys. 

The committee appointed to arrange the farewell demonstration was composed of the fol- 

Mayor Louis P. Fuhrmann, chairman; Councilman Charles M. Heald, Councilman Arthur W. 
Kreinheder, Councilman John F. Malone, Gen. Edgar B. Jewett, Albert H. Adams, Patrick H. 
Cochrane, Daniel W. Emerling, Howard A. Forman, Dr. Francis E. Fronczak, Dr. Walter S. 
Goodale, Chief John Martin, Chief Bernard J. McConnell, Enerio Randaccio, Herbert I. Sackett, 
George K. Staples, Daniel J. Sweeney, Col. John L. Schwartz, Major N. E. Turgeon, Moses 
Wallens, Albert B. Wright. 


Mounted police. Grand marshal. Chief of Police John Martin; Aides to grand marshal. Dr. 
Walter S. Goodale and Daniel J. Sweeney; Mayor Louis P. Fuhrmann and Councilmen Charles 
M. Heald, Charles B. Hill, Arthur W. Kreinheder, John F. Malone; Park Band. 

Division No. 1 — Major Newton E. Turgeon, marshal, uniformed police department, uni- 
formed fire department, police reserve. 

Division No. 2 — Albert B. Wright, marshal; Knights Templar; Scottish Rite Consistory; 
Knights of St. John; miscellaneous uniformed bodies. 

Division No. 3 — Captain Herbert I. Sackett, marshal; Home Defense Corps. 

Division No. 4— Albert H. Adams, marshal; Grand Army of the Republic. 

Division No. 5 — 74th Regiment, Col. Arthur Kemp, commanding. 

124 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

The battalions were up to the standard of recruiting and were commanded by: 1st, Major 
Minnis; 2d, Major Gibson; 3d, Major Wood; headquarters company. Captain Robertson, com- 
manding; machine gun squad, Captain Branch; supply company, Captain Hubbell; sanitary 
corps. Major Beebe. Dr. Arthur C. Schaefer Deputy Health Commissioner of Buffalo and a 
captain on the headquarters staff was chosen sanitary officer at Spartanburg. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 



THROUGH the summer of 1917 Buffalo, like her sister American cities, was involved in war 
work to such an extent that local affairs were wholly subordinated. Every man, woman and 
child was doing his or her "bit" toward winning the war. Attention locally was centered 
on the munition plants and the farms. However, we were approaching another municipal elec- 
tion. No matter how earnest and exciting were the war work campaigns, the political struggle 
lost none of its attractive power. Not only the men, but the women, were eager for political 

E. B. Holmes Selling First War Savings Stamp to Mayor George S. Buck 

combat; the men concerned in the mayoralty election, and the women absorbed in the campaign 
for the extension of suffrage to the women of New York State, which happily ended in a decisive 
victory for them. 

Louis P. Fuhrmann had had two terms as Mayor — eight years. His friends enthused over the 
prospect of another election. He had neither asked nor given quarter in the bitter political battle 
for the commission form of government two years previously, and the adoption of the new charter 
was particularly a personal defeat for him. When the time for nominations in the late months 
of 1917 rolled around, however, there seemed to be an exceptionally strong demand for his re- 
nomination. A committee of citizens of various political affiliations, headed by William E. Robert- 
son, a former president of the Chamber of Commerce, called on the Mayor and urged him to 
become a candidate for renomination. That may have been part of a political play or political 

126 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

program, but whether it was or not, it gave expression to a genuine sentiment in business circles, 
and surely was expressive of what we called "observable public opinion." 

So strong was the demand for Mayor Fuhrmann's renomination, that a number of prominent 
business men who were approached by political antagonists of the Mayor, declined to listen to 
the suggestion that they become candidates against him. 

Finally, the opposition forces turned to George S. Buck, County Auditor, and Mr. Buck 
agreed to become a candidate for Mayor. Of course, the new charter provided that partisan- 
ship should be eliminated from the city government, and candidates were assumed to be entirely 
removed from partisan designation. It was well known, however, that Mayor Fuhrmann would 
have the support generally of Democratic party men, while Mr. Buck would have the support 
of the Republican party men, or those among them in each case who supported candidates on 
party affiliation. 

George S. Buck was considered a good candidate though not a particularly strong one. He 
had been re-elected County Auditor two years before by scarcely one hundred majority. He 
was a young man, however, fearless in the discharge of his duties in the county office, fair-minded, 
just, and wholly without prejudice. He had no smell of smoke in his official garments. He had 
played the game square with all men; had never taken unfair advantage of any political associ- 
ate or opponent, and never sought his personal advancement over the ruined reputation of others. 
He was conceded to be a clean, decent candidate, but was not generally looked upon as possess- 
ing the personal popularity or the aggressive qualities which would make him a formidable oppo- 
nent of Mayor Fuhrmann. A. .J. Elias, successful business man, without any particular organiza- 
tion support, also entered the field. 

Another factor entering into the 1917 election was the increasing strength of the Socialist 
Party movement. Franklin P. Brill became a candidate, backed by the members of that party. 
The Socialist element had been augmented by those who desired to register a protest against the 
war, and the supporters of candidate Brill were listed generally as being in a large measure the 
pacifistic element of the community. Of course, many of the Brill supporters were out and out 
Socialists who had been such prior to the war, but they numbered not to exceed 3,000, while his 
vote at the primaries exceeded 14,000. 

No candidate had a party column or party emblem on the official ballot, but though unde- 
signated the candidates wei-e not untagged, and the voting public knew the party alignment of 
each. Mayor Fuhrmann polled upward of 17,000 votes in the primaries; Mr. Buck 14,600 and 
Mr. Brill 14,200. Mr. Elias polled something over 6,000 and the balance of the votes were blank 
or scattering. The two receiving the highest number of votes were declared the nominees to con- 
test for the office at the regular election in November. 

The campaign was not unlike other political campaigns of preceding years with this one excep- 
tion — the soldiers were authorized to vote at their various camps. The National Guard Units 
were then at Spartanburg. The sailors, for the most part, were at the Great Lakes Training 
Station. Camps Dix and Upton held many selective service boys from Buffalo. The campaign, 
while particularly active in Buffalo, was none the less active about the camps, but it all ended 
with a general reversal of the surface sentiment prevalent at its start. On election day George 
S. Buck was chosen Mayor by upward of 10,000 plurality. 

Councilman .John F. Malone who was on the ticket for re-election and who was of the same 
political party as Mayor Fuhrmann, withstood the tide that was running against his ticket 
and was re-elected by a substantial plurality. 

Mayor Buck went into office on January 1, 1918. He took the oath in the Council Chamber 
on New Year's Day before an enthusiastic audience which packed the chamber. Flowers were 
everywhere about the hall, and the new Mayor, indeed, had a throng of well-wishers and a host 
of supporters from all walks of life about him, as he set out on his mayoralty career. 

In his inaugural address he laid down concisely and clearly his plan of action. In brief, he 
promised a clean city; and, for his own part, equal and exact justice to all men, no matter what 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 127 

creed, color or party affiliation. In the year and a half that has elapsed between his entrance 
into office and this publication, Mayor Buck has adhered religiously to that promise. Some of the 
days have been exceptionally dark and cloudy, and he has encountered no end of storms. Support- 
ers have fallen away from him and undoubtedly new friendships have been formed. The wheel 
of politics never ceases to grind, and not infrequently the friends of yesterday become the enemies 
of to-day, and vice versa. But no one at this period would venture to say that the Mayor failed 
in the slightest in the promises he made in the Council Chamber on that New Year's Day. 

Though Buffalonians were then thoroughly saturated with the needs of the war. Mayor 
Buck's first message* contained only a slight reference to it. American soldiers had not entered 
into combat, but many Buffalo boys were then in training overseas with the First and Second 
Army Divisions, composed of regulars, and with the 42nd Division to which Maj. William J. 
Donovan was attached, and the camps were I'apidly filling up with Buffalonians who were soon 
to see hard service. 

*We have every reason to be proud of the part that Buffalo has played in the service of the country. We sent troops to the Mexican border in 
numbers far in excess of our share. Our people have responded splendidly to every call to duty since the nation took up its share of the burdens 
of the great war. We go about our daily routine so peacefully that it is hard for us to realize that Buffalo is a strategic point of great importance. 
Its shipping facilities by water and by land are arteries for the movement of precious supplies. There is no harm in speaking of this for the enemy 
knows it, but it is important that our people realize the situation and be prepared to co-operate with the federal government in any measures 
it may deem necessary to protect our water front, our factories and tiur railroads from damage by the enemy. 

While the war has added heavily to our burdens and our problems, it has brought with it this compensation. I believe there never was a spirit 
of helpfulness and willingness to co-operate as exists among our citizens to-day. The growth of this spirit nas been most marked, and combined 
with all the wonderful natural advantages which the people of this city possess I believe there never was a time when we could look forward with 
greater hopefulness to the future than at present. Let us congratulate ourselves that we are Buffalonians. 

128 Buffalo's Part in the World War 


FORT Porter is located between Massachusetts and Connecticut Streets on the north and 
south, and Front Street and Niagara River on the east and west. It is situated on a sixty 
foot bluff at the northeast end of Lake Erie, where the lake opens into its outlet, the Niagara 
River and toward the Canadian Shore. The reservation covers about 28J/2 acres and is practically a 
continuation on the north of one of Buffalo's Parks, "The Front." 

Fort Porter was named in honor of General Peter B. Porter, a distinguished volunteer officer 
in the war of 1812, Secretary of War in 1828, and at one time part owner of Niagara Falls. 

The early history of Fort Porter is nebulous but, so far as known, it has never been the scene 
of a siege or battle. After the fall of Fort Erie on the Canadian side and after the battle of Lundy's 
Lane in 1814, American troops were encamped near the present post site. After the Patriot War 
(1837) in Canada, troops were stationed in a neighboring portion of Buffalo for about six years. 

In 1841 a governmental appropriation of $50,000 was made for the purchase of grounds for a 
defensive works near Buffalo and the present reservation was obtained partly by such purchase 
and partly by various small cessions from the State of New York. 

Up to 1861 Fort Porter was under the jurisdiction of the Corps of Engineers with an ordnance 
sergeant, or other suitable person, in charge but in August of that year the Secretary of War 
designated it as a volunteer rendezvous, and the second Buffalo Regiment, under General Bidwell 
and an Artillery Company under Major Weidrick were the first volunteer organizations here 
assembled. From that time on throughout the Civil Wai', the reservation was used as a military 
camp for the collection, organization and instruction of volunteers. 

In 1866 the post was in process of abandonment, when the "Fenian Raid" of that year brought 
troops to Buffalo, and Fort Porter dates its charter as a permanent garrisoned post from that 

After 1869 the Fort was used as an infantry post until this country entered the World War. 
At that time there was a detachment of the 22nd Infantry on the post assigned there to do guard 
duty. During the months of June, July and August, 1917, all New York State candidates, with 
the exception of those from New York City, were examined at Fort Porter for the 2d Officers' 
Training Camp. Lieutenant John H. Baker, who was the Commander of the Post, was in charge 
and Captain John G. Stove was the Chief Medical Officer. 

During that summer the people of Buffalo were greatly interested in the idea of a Hospital 
Unit being organized, consisting wholly of local men and this was realized when Base Hospital 23 
was mobilized at Fort Porter on August 21, 1917, under the command of Major Marshall Clinton. 

Three other hospital units were organized at Fort Porter while Base Hospital 23 was still at 
the post. They mobilized on November 12th. They were Unit A from Philadelphia, with Major 
John A. Jopson commanding; Unit F from New York City, with Major L. K. Noft' commanding; 
Unit K from Omaha with Major Donald Macrae Jr. commanding. Unit F left Fort Porter on 
January 7, 1918, and three days later the other two units followed all bound for overseas. 

Fort Porter officially became U. S. Army General Hospital No. 4 on November 10, 1917, with 
Major Thomas D. Woodson commanding. Only medical and surgical cases were treated for the 
first few months but on February 28, 1918, the first psychiatric cases were received, being 22 in 
number. During the rest of the year there was a gradual increase in the number of cases each 
month. The total number of admissions for the first year was 1062 and the number of discharges 
was 835. The discharges were either to the homes of the patients or to a government institution. 

The hospital had now become a special institution for the cai'e of psychiatric and nervous cases 
although medical and surgical cases were still treated at the post hospital. Extensive alterations 
had been made in the old barracks building to fit it for the proper care of psychiatric patients. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 129 

The old squad-rooms were made into wards and the apparatus for the treatment of such cases 
was installed. In caring for the patients all available means, of a surgical, medical and hydro- 
therapeutic nature, were used in order to improve their condition and hasten their recovery. The 
doctors assigned here to treat these patients were men who had had from ten to fifteen years' ex- 
perience in State Hospitals caring for psychiatric cases. 

Besides these medical officers and the experienced attendants there was a very efficient staff 
of nurses of the Army Nurse Corps, and Army Reserve Nurse Corps. The first group of nurses 
arrived at the hospital February 16, 1918, and rendered a splendid service under the leadership 
of Anna G. McCrady, A. N. C. As the number of patients increased there was naturally a greater 
need of more nurses and the staff gradually grew to 36 in number. Miss McCrady was sent 
overseas the following .July and was replaced by .Jane B. Sylvester, A. N. C. Miss Sylvester was 
transferred in October of the same year and Lutie F. Tufts, A. N. C. was assigned to fill the 

Occupational work for the patients was introduced October 2, 1918, by competent Recon- 
struction aides under the leadership of Miss Alma L. Whitney. This included rug-weaving, 
basket-making and other work in the line of Arts and Crafts. 

The full value of the work of these nurses and reconstruction aides will never be fully appre- 
ciated except by the patients who came under their care. 

In order that the patients be kept continually in a cheerful atmosphere the post orchestra and 
the Commission on Training Camp Activities furnished a musical program throughout the wards 
daily. Two vaudeville programs were given by professional talent from the theaters in the city 
each week, so that there was plenty of entertainment. 

The patients were given daily exercise and daily walks in the vicinity of the Fort. The weather 
during the winter of 1918-1919 was very mild and the nearby park made an ideal promenade. 
The men did not suffer from the cold winds that usually sweep over the Fort and Park, from the 
river, during the winter months. 

The Fort Porter Reporter, a weekly newspaper, was published in the interests of the patients 
and the enlisted personnel, and copies of this paper were sent to the homes of all the patients so 
that the families of these men were kept informed as to what was going on at the hospital and 
the Fort. The paper acted as a sort of weekly letter home. 

Major Woodson, now Lieutenant Colonel Woodson, was transferred to Plattsburg, N. Y., in 
June, 1918, to take charge of the General Hospital at that place. Upon his transfer. Major Albert 
E. Brownrigg assumed command of the post. He was Commanding Officer until January 22, 
1919, when Lieutenant Colonel Joseph E. Bastion arrived to take command. 

Colonel Bastion's staff consisted of the following officers: 

Lieutenant Colonel Joseph E. Bastion, Commanding Officer; Captain Paul F. Compton, Ad- 
jutant; Major Oliver E. Balch, Quartermaster and Supply Officer; Captain Phihp Smith, Chief 
of Service; 1st Lieutenant George P. Kent, Personnel Adjutant; 1st Lieutenant Frank A. Stock- 
well, Chaplain; 2nd Lieutenant John P. Flanders, Registrar. 

This old army post probably never did any greater service to the Government than it rendered 
during the World War, especially after it became a General Hospital. To have a part in the 
restoration to health of the unfortunate soldiers, most of whom saw active warfare, was indeed a 
noble work and Buffalo may well be proud of Fort Porter for the services done there during 
the greatest war in history. 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 


THE Base Hospital 23 of Buffalo, organized by the Red Cross and manned by Buffalonians 
and people from the surrounding towns, was mobilized on the 21st of August, 1917, at 
Fort Porter. The unit was in training there for three months. It numbered 28 Doctors, 
75 Nurses and 153 enlisted men. They had several disappointments while at Fort Porter, expect- 
ing every day to get orders to move for "Somewhere in France," or somewhere in the United 
States. Four or five times they were ordered to leave within 24 hours, but just at the last minute 
the order was cancelled. Finally they got away on the 21st of November, 1917, leaving Fort 
Porter at 6.30 P.M. It was pouring rain, and they marched through dark streets to the Lehigh 
Valley depot. 

A small crowd followed, mostly relatives, who had waited all day to see them off. Amid tears, 
smiles and kisses from the loved ones they were leaving behind, the train pulled out at 8.20 P.M. 
They had no idea of the whereabouts of their destination. 

This story of the trip is told by Private Hourigan: "We arrived in Jersey City at 7.15 A.M. 
The Red Cross served us breakfast, good hot coffee, sandwiches and cigarettes. At 8.30 A.M. 
we boarded a feny-boat and crossed to Hoboken. Here we lined up, and everything seemed to 
be figured out ahead of our arrival. Our list of officers, nurses and men, was already in the hands 
of the shipping officers. At last our turn came to board the troopship, our names were called, 
and as we went up the gangplank we each got a card with our bunk number on it, also a meal 
card. The boys were all excited, knowing by this time that we were bound for Somewhere in 
France. The boat finished loading about 11 o'clock and we left New York at 12.15 P.M. the 22nd 
of November. 

In Railroad Yard at 6 A. M. as Troop Train Pulled Out 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 131 

"The name of our troopship was the Carpathia, Cunard Line, and manned by a British crew. 
We started out with rather bad luck, one man was accidentally shot and instantly killed by a 
guard going on first duty. He was examining his rifle which went off, causing this sad affair, the 
boat slowed down and the body was taken off at the Statue of Liberty. We arrived at Halifax 
on Saturday afternoon; it was snowing and very cold. We stayed over Sunday, and left Monday 
afternoon at 1.30. It was here we picked up the rest of the convoy, 10 boats in all. 

"Steaming out to sea was a beautiful sight, all the boats in line and the boys cheering to one 
another. The harbour at Halifax was very well protected with mines — only a narrow passage left 
open. The boats kept close together, the first few days out. On the fifth day we ran into a severe 
storm which lasted for three days. The boys got seasick, all our dishes were broken, so we had 
to bring our mess kits to the front. During the storm, seven of the boats left us. Being capable 
of making more speed, they went on ahead. After the storm calmed down a little, we found that 
the Carpathia had shipped quite a lot of water and the pumps were working hard bailing her out. 
She was an old boat and had the reputation of being the first to the assistance of the Titanic, 
which foundered off the banks of Newfoundland. 

"We were kept busy on board. Life boat drill twice a day, inspection daily and we wore life 
preservers at all times. The instructions on board to abandon ship, three long blasts and two 
short ones. One afternoon a wave hit the boat on the port side, causing her to give a sudden lurch. 
At the same time the horn blew two blasts and nobody waited for the third. (Of course there 
wasn't a third.) There was a mad scramble for the upper decks. Some of the fellows were shaving 
and ran with the lather on their faces. Others forgot their life belts and it looked as though we 
were ready for our salt water plunge, when we got orders to return to our quarters. It was a false 
alarm. The rats on board, were quite at home and tried hard to make the acquaintance of the 
boys while sleeping. It wasn't anything unusual to be run over by a barrage of rats. 

"Our tenth day out and no encounter with the subs. It was too rough for them to operate. 
Our quarters in the boat were located on the lower deck. The bunks were laid out in blocks of 
thirty, fifteen lower and fifteen upper. At the corners of each block the boys put up street 
signs, and we had on board the Carpathia some of the familiar streets of Buffalo. The orders 
were very strict concerning smoking after dark, or throwing any refuse overboard. A light at 
night can be seen for quite a distance at sea, and it would enable the Boche subs to locate us 
easily; the refuse thrown overboard would also enable them to follow up our trail. 

"Guards had orders to shoot any man showing a light after dark. We had a few concerts, 
held in the mess room. On the seventeenth day we sighted land and steamed up the river Mersey 
to Liverpool. We anchored in the harbor over night, and docked next morning at nine o'clock. 
The first greeting on landing was a severe hail-storm. It was terribly cold. 

"We stood around all day on the dock. At six o'clock we boarded a train and pulled into 
Winchester at 12.30 A. M. It was pouring rain and we had to march for four miles, mostly up- 
hill, to a rest camp. We stood in the rain and mud with our full packs for fully two hours before 
a shack was assigned to us. These shacks had concrete floors, with accommodations for fifty 
men. The bunks were three planks laid on the floor with a straw mattress. 

"We remained in Winchester for five days, had some long hikes through the English country, 
and were taken through the wonderful Cathedral in the little town. Leaving here after our rest, 
we arrived at Southampton, boarding a boat which had on it about two hundred horses occupy- 
ing the best apartment. Our quarters were in the hold underneath the horses. We had no bunks, 
but slept in the hay which had been provided for the first-class passengers — the horses. 

"The crossing of the Channel at that time was done at night on account of the sub warfare. 
So we left Southampton after dark. About midnight some Boche planes were flying over the 
Channel to make a raid somewhere in England. All the searchlights were turned on them from 
the forts and the boats guarding the waters between France and England. Their anti-aircraft 
guns also put up a wonderful barrage. While this was taking place our destroyers, two of which 
we had guarding us while crossing, made an awful noise blowing their sirens and making circles 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 


Hospital No. 

around our boat. I inquired what the trouble was, and found out that a sub was in the vicinity. 
The boat returned to Southampton and we made the trip in safety the following night. 

"We landed in Ha\Te in the early morning. It was snowing, and our first glimpse of France 
didn't look very promising. While landing we were cheered by crowds of French old men and 
women. We marched to a British "replacement camp, on the outskirts of the city, where we 
remained for two days. The sleeping quarters here were very simple; we slept on a sheet of 
lattice wire, rolled up in our blankets. 

"On the third day at three o'clock we marched through a heavy snow storm in the dark to 
the railroad station. The cars we traveled in were third class, the next thing over there to a 
box-car, and with about the same amount of comfort. The express trains are just as fast as a 
street car in the U. S. After ti-aveling almost four days we finally reached our destination, a 
beautiful watering place called Vittel on the Vosges Mountains, in the Lorraine Sector. 

"We were tired and hungry and a good many had colds. Afterward we had a good hot supper 
served us by Unit 36 of Detroit, who were also located in Vittel and arrived there a month ahead 
of us. Our barracks were in a beautiful building called the Casino, formerly used as a gambling 
house. On the walls were some splendid paintings. It had a theater which was taken over by 
the Red Cross for the purpose of entertaining patients and personnel of the hospital center. We 
enjoyed some good vaudeville shows and splendid moving pictures, both French and American. 
This casino resembled Monte Carlo on a small scale. It is also known as the place where the 
King of Portugal met Gaby Deslys the famous French actress, which romance led to the loss of 
his throne. 

"For a small town Vittel had some beautiful and modern hotels, which were all taken over by 
the U. S. Government to be used as hospitals. Unit 23 of Buffalo had seven and Unit 36 of Detroit 
the same number. 

"We had quite a time learning enough of the French language to make known our wants to 
the townspeople, but we finally got along very well. When we left Buffalo our outfit was supposed 
to be a 500 bed hospital, but after a few months in Vittel, we had a capacity of over 3,000. We 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 133 

had two surgical hospitals with a capacity of twelve hundred patients, two medical hospitals with 
a capacity of fifteen hundred patients; one contagious hospital, capacity three hundred; one officers' 
hospital, capacity two hundred fifty, and one nurses' hospital, capacity of one hundred fifty. The 
hotels occupied by Unit 23, were as follows: The Continental, Terminus, Angle-Terre, Nouvel, 
La Providence, Lorraine, and Joan d'Arc. The Lorraine was the officers' hospital and the Joan 
d'Arc the nurses' hospital. In fitting up these hotels as hospitals they found an enormous task. 
They were not used since the outbreak of the war and some were in very bad condition. The 
plumbing was in bad way ; the rooms were dirty and dusty, and had to be scrubbed from ceiling 
to floor. The electric wiring and lighting fixtures needed a lot of repairing. It took almost three 
months to get the building in a habitable condition. Our beds, bedding, and other hospital materi- 
als, didn't begin to arrive in Vittel until February, although it left Buffalo two months ahead of 
us. It came rather fast when once started, at the rate of six, eight and ten cars a day. We worked 
hard and long, unloading cars and sorting the materials for the different hospitals. The boys did 
it with a smile. We went over to do our bit and not to kick about hard work and long hours. 
We knew that the people back home would feel proud of Unit 23, when they found out that it 
was the best organized and equipped outfit in France. We had splendid doctors and nurses, and 
the enlisted men never had any ill feeling toward each other. Their willingness brought them 
praise even from their own officers. At last our hospital was in running order and our first patients 
came in during March. At that time we took care of all Allied soldiers. We had French, English, 
Italian and men from the colonies, all at one time. 

" Later when the U. S. troops were coming over more rapidly and the First and Second American 
Divisions were moving up to the Lorraine Front, the commandant of the hospital centre received 
orders to evacuate all Allied soldiers but Americans, and thereafter to care for Americans only. 
We soon had a gi'eat many of our boys as patients but nowhere over-crowded. They got the 
best medical attention and plenty of good food ; in fact, the very comforts of home. Every ward 
had a talking machine and plenty of records, and it made the boys feel good to listen to the jazz 
music, other lively pieces and the patriotic selections of their home land. 

"We didn't get over crowded until the St. Mihiel drive started, then we had to use every bit 
of space to be found. The hallways were fitted up with cots and the capacity of each hospital 
was far exceeded. The operating rooms were busy day and night, ambulance and Red Cross 
trains were coming in at all hours. The suffering of wounded men was intense but they seemed 
to think nothing of their wounds, smoked cigarettes and " kidded " one another over their injuries; 
at the same time, many of those men had arms or legs shot to pieces. As fast as patients could 
possibly be moved they were sent to base hospitals farther back. 

" Our center being the nearest to the Lorraine Front, was made an evacuation hospital during 
the St. Mihiel drive. The Red Cross did wonderful work among the wounded boys. They visited 
the hospitals every day, gave them everything they needed, and entertained them in every way. 

"We didn't see much of the real action, but most of us were up at the front for some time. 
The wonderful and most powerful barrage in the history of the world, put up by the Americans 
before their drive at St. Mihiel, could be heard distinctly fifty miles back. Places not very far 
from us were bombed by the Boche airmen. Mirecourt, ten miles; Erinal, twenty miles, and 
Neuf-chateau thirty miles, were bombed several times. They flew over our center very often, 
but never did any damage. 

"Our loss of patients was very small, due to the excellent treatment given them by our skilled 
doctors and nurses. It was sad when we lost some of our own unit. The first one we lost was 
our beloved adjutant, Capt. Bun-oughs. The boys missed him very much. Whenever they got 
into any trouble, a little trip to the adjutant's office, and everything was easy for them. We 
used to call him" Dad." The same week that we lost Capt. Burroughs, we lost one nurse — Miss 
Fallon — two enlisted men, Cook Ranny and private Tubbs, and later another enlisted man, 
Private Streight of Lancaster, N. Y. 

"Base Hospital 23 handled close to L5,000 patients during the period of the war." 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 

Women at Work on the Farm—Buffalo Girls Picking Peas on an Erie County Farm 

Shoveling Refuse from a Freight Car at East Buffalo 

At the End of a Perfect Day 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 135 


AS the big German drive of March, 1918, forced back the French soldiers nearer and nearer 

ZX to Paris, and Prince Rupprecht's army battered its way over Haig's forces to Ypres and 
-^ ■*" mounted the vantage points of Kemmel Hill, America tightened its win-the-war policy. 
Difficult days were those for the epicure and the erstwhile traveling salesman. We had no travel- 
ing salesmen then. They disappeared in a night. Nobody had anything to sell. Factories were 
making trucks or tanks or explosives or shells or parts of aeroplanes. And no salesmen were 
needed for the necessities of life. The market was short of these. 

Traveling men may not be the premier eaters of the land, but they have been frequently pictured 
as such. Whether it was traveling men or professional men or bankers or merchants who dined 
sumptuously before 1918, they found the food restrictions growing distressingly exacting before 
the winter of 1918 was out of the way. Heatless Mondays were followed by meatless Tuesdays 
and wheatless Wednesdays. No cereals for breakfast ! No wheat rolls! No wheat bread ! Home 
cooking was under the Government ban so that the fastidious eater could turn nowhere for relief. 
Pie crust sans wheat flour was like the proverbial play of Hamlet minus Hamlet. One taste was 
enough. The sugar bowls disappeared from the tables. Sometimes sugar would be served in 
miniature paper bags. Sometimes waiters or waitresses could be importuned to put a spoonful 
of sugar into one's tea or coffee before serving it, and frequently patrons would wait in vain for 
sugar. Sometimes it happened that restaurants were entirely without sugar. Frostings no longer 
adorned the cakes; sherbets and ices were gone until the dawn of a brighter day. Substitutes 
for flour undermined the flavor of all pastries, and the ingredients which were now injected into 
the substructure of a strawberry shortcake left even that heretofore popular dish a poor forsaken 

The man who lunched at the larger hotels — and the same rules obtained elsewhere — found on 
his menu card a reminder* of the food price he was expected to pay; not for food but in food 
for war. 


For conservation no bread and butter shall be served unless the guest requests it, and when bread and butter is served, it must not be put upon 
the table until after the first course of the meal is served. . 

The service of bread should conform to the rules of the Baking Regulations, which require that no bread with less than 20 per cent of substi- 
tutes in it be served, that not more than two (2) ounces of Victory Bread or rolls (bread containing 20 per cent of wheat flour substitute or 40 per 
cent of rye flour), or if no Victory Bread is served, not more than four (4) ounces of other breads, such as corn bread, Boston brown bread, mufRns, 
etc., be served to one person at any one meal, except sandwiches, or bread served at boarding camps, or rye bread which contains at least 50 per 
cent of rye flour. 

Rolls should weigh not more than one (1) ounce each. All bakery products must be made in accordance with the rules and regulations of the 
Baking Division. This applies to all bakery products served, whether made on the premises or purchased from bakers. 

Toast must not be served as garniture or under meat. 

Standardize your butter service and limit it to one-half ounce. 

Cereals— Serve all cereals sparingly, as they are greatly needed both for the Armies of the Allies and are ideal foods to store and transport. 

Meats— Portions of meat should be cut to the best advantage, and as small as practicable to meet the requirements of patrons, and no more 
than one portion of any kind of Meat or Poultry should be served at any one meal. If patrons desire it, one mutton chop, one lamb chop or one 
pork chop should be served to an order, and reduced portions of ham and bacon should be served. 

Bacon must not be used as a garniture. 

Fats — Serve as few fried dishes as possible, as it is necessary to conserve all fats, both animal and vegetable. 

Trim and save all coarse fats from meat before cooking. Munition and soap manufacturers need waste fats. 

Sugar — Serve no sugar unless requested; if requested, not more tham one teaspoonful or its equivalent to any one person at a meal. One small 
lump is the service for demi-tasse. The use of the sugar bowl on the table must be discontinued. 

Serve no candies after meals. 

Eliminate icing made with cane or beet sugar from all cakes. 

Use honey, maple sugar, corn sugar and syrups as sweeteners. 

Fresh Vegetables and Fruits — Serve fresh vegetables and fruits whenever possible. Attractive preparation will popularize their use. 

Feature vegetable dinners, and fruit and vegetable salads. 

Minimize the use of canned fruits and vegetables — save tin and labor. 

Coffee — In order to relieve ships transporting coffee to this country, so that we may use them to transport our troops and supplies abroad, we 
ask the hotels and restaurants to economize in the use of coffee by every possible care. 

Cheese — A shortage of Cheddar, commonly called American cheese, made apparent by the tremendous demand of our Army and the Allies, 
makes it necessary for us to ask public eating places to avoid the service of this particular kind of cheese wherever possible. 

The service of cheese with salads and the use of cheese with cooked dishes, such as macaroni, Welsh rarebits, etc., should be avoided. 

Ice — Serve ice sparingly. Practice rigid economy in its use. Ammonia, which is used in making artificial ice, is greatly needed in the manufac- 
ture of munitions. 

The Food Administration believes the fourth meal to be unnecessary and unpatriotic. Where suppers are served all meats should be eliminated 
and such dishes should be substituted as sea foods, game in season, egg dishes and such by-products of meat as are desirable. 

The Food Administration believes elaborate lunches and banquets are unpatriotic and should not be served. Lunches and banquets are recog- 
nized as being necessary for social enjoyment of the people, but at such gatherings a simple meal should be served, such as would be eaten in the 
home. No waste or extravagant use "of food should be allowed in this critical time. The hour for such functions should be so regulated that 
the repast will take the place of one of the regular meals. 

(Continued on page 136) 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 

The August 1, 1918, menu card offered by Manager Ireland of the Lafayette Hotel would 
scarcely be recognized in the same hotel a year later. Enlarged signs were displayed attractively 
about the Lafayette dining room. They seemed distressingly diversified and numerous. Waiters 
were cold and cheerless, and spoken language was more unintelligible to them than ordinarily. 
Those who felt that Mr. Ireland was too conscientiously devoted to the conservation of food 
found an identical condition in the dining department of H. Montgomery Gerrans' Iroquois 
Hotel, where both Mr. Gerrans and Mr. Green spent laborious hours with those who did not 
understand the value of the change which had come over the elaborately dressed tables. 

A portion of an Iroquois breakfast menu of the first Tuesday in April, 1918, read: 

CEREALS (With Cream) 

Cream of Wheat 25c Oatmeal 25c Crushed Wheat 25c 

Triscuit 25c Corn Flakes 20c Grape-Nuts 25c Mapl-Flakes 20c 

Hominy 25e Fried Hominy or Corn Mush 25c Force 25c 

Shredded Wheat Biscuit (ind.) 25c Puffed Wheat or Rice 25c 

And the following day, the same section read: 

CEREALS (With Cream) 

.\s requested by the U. S. Food Administration, we shall not serve any wheat cereals 
nor wheat in any form until further notice 

Corn Flakes 20c 

Grape Nuts 25c 

Mapl-Flakes 20c 

Fried Corn Mush 25c 

Puffed Rice 25c 

Mr. Gerrans' meat menu for a Monday breakfast follows: 

Broiled Mutton Chop 65c 

Small Sirloin Steak $L45 

Sirloin Steak, Creole $2.50 
Tenderloin Steak $2.00 

Hamburger or Salisbury Steak 80c 
Broiled Veal Kidney 70c 
Lamb Kidneys, Broiled 60c 

Broiled Sweetbread on Toast 90c 
Broiled Pork Tenderloin 80c 

Broiled Honeycomb Tripe 60c 
Chicken Livers en Brochette 65c 
Spring Chicken (half) $L15 

Lamb Chops, Broiled 80c 

Sirloin Steak $2.00 

Extra Sirloin $3.00 

Small Tenderloin $LO0 

Ham or Bacon 60c 

Beechnut Bacon 70c 

Sautees au Madere 70c 

en Brochette 90c 

Broiled Fresh Pig's Feet 60c 

Breakfast Steak $1.00 
With mushrooms $2.90 
Pork Chop 75c 

Veal Cutlet 75c 
Calf's Liver, Saute with Bacon 70c 
Fried Salt Pork 60c 
Corned Beef Hash with Poached Egg 65c 
Broiled Virginia Ham 75c 
Chipped Beef in Cream 60c 

Broiled Royal Squab $1.25 

Squab Chicken, Broiled $1.75 
Chicken Hash with Green Peppers 85c 

Reduce the use of china, linen and silver in order to effect a saving in labor. Serve food whenever possible in the plate or dish from which it is 
to be eaten. Plate service should be established wherever possible: that is, the meat and vegetables comprising the main part of the meal should 
be placed on one plate instead of served in several side dishes. Service plates should be eliminated. Place only the amount of silverware on the 
table that is actually to be used for the meal. 

All so-called general bills-of-fare used in hotels and public eating places should be abandoned. The great variety of dishes that are usually listed 
on a general bill-of-fare necessitates carrying in the ice-bo.xes large quantities of meats and other produce, and spoilage and waste are liable to 
follow. A simple bill-of-fare should be arranged — one for breakfast, one for luncheon and one for dinner or supper, all witli a limited number of 
dishes, and changed from day to day to give variety. A standard form of menu card is recommended, maximum size about 6" x 10". This should 
be printed on paper or cardboard of as light a quality as practicable. The simplifying of menu cards alone would save thousands of tons of paper 

The encouragement of hors d'oeuvres, of vegetables, salads, fruits, sea foods, and the use of made-over dishes and of animal by-products, such 
as Ox-tails, Tongues, Calves' Heads, Livers, Kidneys, Tripe, Sweetbreads, Brains and Feet will save greatly in all staples and permit the effective 
use of many available foods. 

Table d'hote meals, as prepared and served here in .\merica, often result in waste and should be discouraged in larger hotels and restaurants 
wherever conditions permit. In circumstances requiring table d'hote meals, the bill-of-fare should be limited to few courses and a small variety, 
such as is served on the continent of Europe, and should be very carefully supervised. The American Plan hotel or restaurant should require its 
guests to choose specifically, in writing, from the items offered, as in the European l*Ian, so as to avoid waste. 

The cafeteria system is recommended for employees wherever possible, as it facilitates service and eliminates waste. 

Use local and seasonal supplies. Do not require abnormal use of the railways and steamships to transport products from far afield, now that 
we need all cars and ships for war purposes. 

All waste food should be saved to feed animals or for reduction, to obtain the fats. No food should be burned. 

The fundamental principle of the regulations of hotels and restaurants depends upon the saving of waste food and the using of left-overs to 
the best advantage. Waste in the kitchen could be curtailed considerably by not having a large amount of food prepared for expected guests who 
may not come. It is better that the American people wait a few minutes for their food than that an unnecessary amount of food be cooked, in 
anticipation of a_ larger number of guests than will actually be served. The suggestion is made that all menu cards be printed in plain English, 
actually descriptive of the food, so that the patron may readily determine what he is ordering. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 137 

But on the following day: 

Panfish, Fried or Broiled 50c Smoked Salmon 50c Ocean Bass 70c Bluefish 70c 

Shad Roe 65c Filet of Sole 60c Yellow Pike 60c Fried Smelt, Tartare 60c 

Whitefish 65c Cod Fish 60c Salmon Steak 75c Fresh Mackerel 60c 

Halibut Steak 65c Yarmouth Bloater 50c Broiled Salt Mackerel 60c 

Kippered Herring 50c Picked-Up Codfish in Cream 50c Codfish Cake 40c 

Broiled or Steamed Finnan Haddie 55c Chicken Livers en Brochette 65c 

Broiled Royal Squab $1.25 Spring Chicken (Half) $1.15 

Squab Chicken, Broiled $1.75 Chicken Hash with Green Peppers 85c 

Each passing day added something new to the Iroquois menu card — but it was usually a new 
restriction. On March 29, 1918, this inscription appeared at the head of the menu: "Our Lunch 
Rolls to-day are made of One-Half Graham, One-Quarter Rye and One-Quarter Barley Flour." 
Apparently Mr. Gerrans found his patrons disappointed in the way he made his March rolls, 
for on April 1st, the menu read: "Our Lunch Rolls to-day are made of three-tenths each, Corn 
Meal, Corn Flour, Barley Flour and one-tenth Potato Flour. " That was enough! No explanatory 
roll notes appeared after that. Possibly Iroquois people took their potatoes in "French Fried" 
form rather than in the form of rolls thereafter. Though the menu cards lacked many of the 
dishes previously served they contained some very commendable things. This, for example: 
"The More Liberty Bonds You Buy, The Nearer Peace Will Be." And this: "Remember That 
Every Dollar You Have is of Draft Age." And then, for fear some enthusiastic diner might 
feel the reference was to things eatable rather than to liberty bonds, this admonition appeared: 
"Money cannot buy wheat to-day." and after the word "wheat "some thoughtful, but altruistic, 
individual inserted the words "nor waiters". 

At the Statler Hotel, as at all the Buffalo hotels and restaurants, a very faithful and pains- 
taking effort was made for the conservation of food. While the restrictions were a matter of 
constant jesting, through it all there ran a spirit of patriotic resolve to abide fully and conscien- 
tiously with every Government requirement. In the center of Mr. Statler's menu, probably 
inserted by Manager Hinkley or Associate Manager Daniels, appeared this trite suggestion 

Are You Overlooking Fish? 
If you've gotten the habit of consulting the menu from "Entrees" down, look higher to-day. 
Some of the very best things on the bill are listed under "Fish." Suggestion: Fried Sole— sweet, 
and brown, and tender — with a bit of salad that sharpens your taste for the delicate flavor of this 
"daintiest of the fishes." All fish is boned in the kitchen. 

"Conserve Beef — Wheat — Sugar — It's the war — Let's help. 

In after years it may be interesting to glance over the menu cards of the war days. 

138 Buffalo's Part in the World War 


MOST American soldiers longed to see London and Paris. The overseas trips were illuminated 
with a discussion of the wonderful things of the old world. They filled the weary 
days as the convoyed transports slowly plowed through the mined and submarine-infested 
ocean. The American correspondents were hurried into Europe ahead of the American troops. 
It was an able, witty, jovial crew of writers who took passage for England at about the time of 
the Pope's peace proposal in the late days of 1917. On the passenger list of correspondents at 
that time appeared the name of Don Martin, a former Buffalo reporter, then political writer of 
the New York Herald. Martin had worked on the Buffalo Express for many years and was widely 
known throughout the city. His residence was at Silver Creek, a few miles from Buffalo, where 
his mother, brother and sisters and his motherless daughter made their home. Martin's wife had 
died shortly after her child was born, and his love was centered in his daughter. He wrote many 
letters to her during his days in Europe, and frequently he sent letters to his sister Alta, a sten- 
ographer employed in the law office of John L. Romer. An accomplished journalist, it was 
not unnatural that he should be an entertaining letter wi'iter. He saw London and Paris as 
the soldier boys saw those cities, and with them. He tramped the streets with the first American 

Writing from the Savoy Hotel, London, on Sunday night of January 6, 1918, to his sister he 
gave this brief, but enveloping view of England's wonderful city during the war period : 


"It seems almost foolish to write because letters are so slow in getting through the censor. I understand it takes 
three weeks for a letter to get to New York. I wrote a very long letter to Dorothy about the trip over and it was 
of course intended for you all. 

"London is a dismal place. Streets are pitch dark at night on account of the constantly expected air raids. It is 
almost hopeless to go anywhere except in a taxicab. There has been no raid since I arrived but there probably will 
be soon. I am quite safe here in the Savoy where I shall probably remain for a while, and my wanderings during 
the day are so restricted that I can easily find a safe spot if a raid warning is given. 

"To-day at breakfast I met Dan Reid who is here after a visit to France for the Food Commission. With him is 
Roscoe Mitchell of Buffalo whom I know; a Mr. Lincoln of Jamestown whom I also know and Everett Colby of 
New Jersey with whom I am acquainted. I shall probably have dinner with them to-morrow. 

"London is a wonderful city, I have been around it pretty well; have seen some of the big army and admiralty 
men and expect soon to see Lloyd George. I have written very little yet. I want to get a line on things first. This 
much I have learned: Germany is not yet licked but will be. The Allies cannot finish the job till the United States 
gets a good army over in France. There are all kinds of peace reports but England is determined to keep at it until, 
with America's aid, Germany is defeated. England is putting up with all kinds of discomforts. Food is none too 
plentiful. There is no fruit except at prohibitive prices; matches are precious and meat is getting scarce. And on 
top of that London gropes around in complete darkness from 4.00 P.M. until 8.00 A.M. and business is very seriously 
interfered with. 

"I shall probably stay here for some time but Hkely will go over to France for a brief stay when the hardest part 
of the winter is over. I can't exactly say I like it. No American does. But of course it is experience. No one can 
ever regret knowing London. 

"I haven't heard anything from the United States yet and probably won't for a while. I feel a little bit homesick, 
I dare say on account of Dorothy, but that will wear off. I know she is all right. I have a couple of pictures of 
her on my dresser and after a while I will get a letter. I hope she had a good Christmas. That candy — and nuts — 
you sent came in very well. I nibbled away at them until the other night. Good candy can't be had here— sugar 
is too precious. 

"This is a rather expensive hotel but is the rendezvous for everyone of importance. It is about like the Waldorf 
in New York though not so big. I have a large room, splendidly furnished, with a private bath, and steam heat. 
It is the only hotel in the city with steam heat. Everything in London is heated with fireplaces which make a tem- 
perature of about 55, and London during January, February and March is cold and damp. 

"One is pretty close to war here. Fully half the persons one meets on the street, in restaurants, or in the hotel 
lobbies are soldiers in uniform. The women all smoke. They sit about the lobbies of the hotels smoking cigarettes 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 


Captain Devereaux Milburn (left), son of John G. Milbuii., aud Captain C. F. Holmes, 
Aides-de-Camp to Major-General McRae — 78th Division 

photograph was taken at Chatel Chehery 

the same as men. Frequently, I have seen women at lunch with children three or four years old, smoking the same 
as men. To me it is very disgusting. 

"The streets of London look pretty much like those of any American city, only here nine out of ten buildings are 
five stories in height, and the tenth is two, three or maybe six or seven stories. Then there are huge city and govern- 
ment buildings everywhere, many several hundred years old. 

"On my way down Fleet Street, I pass a hotel with a sign reading 'Pulis Hotel, Founded 1518'. Two doors from 
our office is a lane leading to the Cheshire Tavern of which you have of course heard. It sets back about 200 ft. 
from Fleet Street and looks precisely as it did in Dr. Johnson's time. I had dinner there last night— a beefsteak 
and kidney pie for 2 shillings 6 pence — 62 )^ cents. Tourists and sightseers keep it up. It is a small place with saw- 
dust on the floor. A little further up the alley is the old house where Samuel Johnson lived. It has not been changed. 

"So, while London is dreary there are many things to brighten up one's existence. I expect to go through West- 
minster Abbey and some other historical places. Everything is now over-shadowed by the war and it is by long 
odds the most overwhelming war England has ever had. It is trying her resources to their utmost but, whatever 
one's life-long opinion of her may be, he must admire her pluck, her forbearance and her determination. 

"With love, 


140 Buffalo's Part in the World War 


THE departure from Buffalo of the national guardsmen and the first draft contingents for 
training camps aroused an intense military spirit. It was not uncommon to see school boys 
drilling in school yards and playgrounds. Home Defense companies, and Police Reserves 
were to be found on the smooth-paved streets nightly, religiously applying themselves to the 
"hay-foot," "straw-foot" e.xercises. Down Main Street at frequent intervals straggling con- 
tingents, each boy with a little bundle of clothes tucked under his arm, tramped along in the 
general direction of the railroad stations. Frequently, the contingent was preceded by a fife and 
drum corps, or a band, and the members of the draft board in automobiles. Very often the 
entire procession, musicians included, would be conveyed to the station in autos. Relatives 
and friends accompanied the boys and few, if any, departed without some sort of a farewell 
ceremony. City officials invariably led the boys to the train and there extended a hearty God- 
speed as they pulled out for the training camps. 

Through the Fall of 1917 numerous contingents, large and small, left Buffalo, and those de- 
partures continued through the Winter and Spring and Summer of 1918. The 1917 contingents 
remained in the training camps much longer than those who were called early in 1918; in fact, 
the German drive which began in March, following the capitulation of Russia, was conducted 
with such severity and success that some of the men who were sent from Buffalo in February 
and March were hurried to France within a month after their departure from home. 

During the preceding winter, however, the boys who had gone to the camps in September and 
November drifted back on furlough. Instead of the slouching boys who tramped down Main 
Street with their extra clothing in a paper-wrapt bundle, militaiy training had transformed them 
into neat, erect, snappy young men, splendid pictures of physical development. The training 
camp had imprinted its reconstructive mark. 

The old 74th Infantry regiment; the 3d Artillery and Troop I, spent the winter of 1917-1918 
in camp at Spartanburg, S. C. It was a long, bitter winter in South Carolina as it was elsewhere, 
and these men suffered severely from cold at that camp. They drilled in the wind and snow 
with the thermometer just above the zero mark, day after day, and grew weary of waiting. Spring 
came and they were still in camp. 

A number of Buffalo men attached to the old National Guard regiments had taken a try for 
commissions on their return from the border. They entered the officers' training camp at Madison 
Barracks. Some won commissions and were assigned to militai'y units then in training here. 

Harold B. Wertz, a sergeant in the old 74th Infantry on the Border, received a commission as 
a first lieutenant, and was assigned to the 18th Infantry, First Division, of the regular army. 
The First Division may have contained regular army men who made their homes, at one time, 
in Buffalo, but it appears that Lieutenant Wertz among the civilian population who entered 
the military service was first to go overseas with a sure-enough American division. His military 
career was a remarkably interesting one, as later developments will show. 

The First Division claims the honor of firing the first rifle shot and sending the first shell into 
the German lines, and also the honor of the first casualty suffered by an American formation, 
as well as of the first capture of prisoners and material. 

On January 15, 1918, the division entered the Ansauville sector, twenty kilometers northwest 
of Toul, relieving the famous 1st Moroccan Division. It remained under the tactical command 
of a French infantry division until January 30th, when it took over things "on its own," and so 
continued until relieved on April 3. During this period of front line duty its captures increased 
signally compared with its training debut, totalling thirty prisoners, one light machine gun and 
four flame throwers. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 141 



THE Evening News Smokes for Soldiers Fund was begun in April, 1917, a few days after the 
United States entered the war. It was created for a two-fold purpose, that of supplying the 
soldier with such comfort and solace as tobacco gives and that of keeping up a link of interest 
between the home folks and the men who would go away to fight for them. 

The Smokes for Soldiers plan was widely promulgated by leading newspapers throughout the 
country. In Buffalo it met with the ready approval of the public and was so liberally contributed 
to that it came to be one of the half a dozen largest funds in the United States. Up to November 
21, 1918, the sum of $39,970.68 was collected in Buffalo alone. 

Of course, the Smokes Fund was popular with the soldiers. Post cards and letters were received 
by the hundreds after each shipment of tobacco, expressing, many times in naive and humorous 
terms, the appreciation of the men in the service. Officers in various branches of the service ex- 
tended their indorsement to the fund and sent letters of thanks. Among these were Colonel 
Cornelius Vanderbilt of the 102d Engineers, Colonel Arthur Kemp, who headed the 74th Infantry 
from Buffalo, and Lieutenant Colonel John W. Rowland of the 106th Field Artillery. 

The work of raising money for the fund was greatly lightened by the voluntary assistance given 
by individuals and organizations in the city. The first flag collection was made in August, 1917, 
during the convention of the Eagles. In the convention parade, a Stars and Stripes of great size 
was carried and quite spontaneously spectators tossed coins into it, shouting "Give it to the 
Smokes Fund." When the collection was counted it was found that .$907.01 had been contributed 
and it was decided to turn it over to the News Smokes Fund as most of the givers had requested. 
This was an idea that met great favor, and in the many parades held in the city during the re- 
mainder of the war there was scarcely one that did not have a flag collection for the Smokes 
Fund. The theaters and factories gave special support to the fund. 

Campaigns were conducted from time to time. In December, 1917, a Smokeless Day plan was 
carried out. The idea was to have smokers abstain for 24 hours and contribute what they would 
have spent for themselves to the fund. This met with success and the sum of $3922 . 09 was turned 
in, with which Christmas packages were purchased for the Buffalo and Western New York boys 
who were with the 27th Division in camp at Spartanburg, S. C. 

This committee of Buffalo business men was in charge of the Smokeless Day arrangements: 
George W. Smith, Chairman; William F. Schwartz, vice chairman; Peter F. Petersen, Richard 
C. Laux, James J. Cuff, John Maloney, Joseph G. Zeitler, Dr. E. G. Bodenbender, Dai H. Lewis 
and Arthur W. Kreinheder. 

In February, 1918, a week's city-wide intensive campaign was conducted. It took in factories, 
offices, stores and shops throughout the city. A pony contest to interest Evening Neivs carriers 
in the campaign was also carried on. The two crusades again resulted in a generous contribu- 
tion. The Committee in charge was as follows: 

William F. Schwartz, chairman; Orson E. Yeager, Harry Thorpe \'ars, James B. Wall, H. N. 
Ness, Jeremiah J. O'Leary, George J. Meyers, Elmore C. Green, William E. Evans, .Jeremiah 
J. Donovan, Samuel H. Witnier, Peter F. Petersen, Joseph G. Zeitler, and .Jacob F. Mueller. 

George A. Cowan, Frederick J. Petersen, Edward Harris, Cjtus L. Barber, A. W. Kirton, 
Warren Worthington, George B. Tyler, John A. Holmes, Frank B. Powell, Frank W. Robinson, 
John C. Bradley, .James H. Dyett, Charles L. Helmer, H. L. Heitzman, Charles L. Keller, D. J. 
Carson, C. S. Alt, C. A. Criqui, E. C. Neal, Frederick F. Klinck, Carl A. Lautz, William H. 
Crosby, J. J. Lockwood, L. W. Wheaton, Thomas G. Lawley, Christian Trapp, George T. Cumpson 
E. J. Duggan, Joseph C. Bergmann, William F. Forrest, H. I. Sackett, H. J. Girvin, B. J. Mc- 
Connell, A. B. Wright, Charles Schoenhut and Gustave C. Miller. 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 

They became the Heroes of the Meuse-Argonne Offensive — Typical Haul of the Draft Net 

Boys Who Had Never Felt a Trigger Leaving for Camp to be Whipped Into a Victorious Army 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 143 

In September, 1918, a two-day campaign was conducted by a committee which was headed by 
Mr§. Allan D. Husted, and Frank Oppenheimer. This brought in the sum of $6,116.00. In connec- 
tion with the campaign a rally was held at Lafayette Square on the afternoon of the first day. 
Henry C. Price acted as chairman of the rally. An old hearse drawn by a couple of mules and 
bearing a big placard inviting everybody to come and drive a nail in the Kaiser's coffin pulled 
up to the platform on the square and a black rough box was unloaded. Donors of $1 or more to 
the fund were invited to come to the front and drive a nail. This took the crowd's fancy and for 
more than 23^ hours men, women and children made contributions and drove nails in the coffin. 
Up to the first of December, 1918, the Smokes for Soldiers Fund had bought and distributed 
these supplies: 

Cigarettes 3,868,160 

Smoking tobacco 1.58,980 packages 

I Chewing tobacco 11,504 packages 

%. ■ Pipes 2,052 

';^7 Chocolate 1,928 packages 

■ferGum 17,210 packages 

I, Matches 18,144 boxes 

The Smokes Fund was managed by George W. Therrien, assisted by Otto M. Walter, both of 
the Evening Neivs circulation department. All clerical work, publicity and advertising space was 
donated by the Evening News, as its part in the enterprise. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 145 


THE Navy took them over and the Navy brought them back! 
Uncle Sam's sailors guarded the course and convoyed the transports across the Atlantic, 
landing the American soldiers safely on foreign soil. The Navy also patrolled the coast, 
planted mines and co-operated with the Allied High Command in the work of nullifying the 
German submarine operations. Many hundreds of Buffalo boys went into the Navy service, and, 
while their records will not be adorned with citations for bravery or heroic deeds in battle, the 
Navy will loom large in the credit given America's fighting men because of the exacting service 
they rendered. Most of the Buffalo boys who enlisted in the Navy were sent to the Naval Train- 
ing Station at Great Lakes, 111. The story of Navy life told by Buffalo boys furnishes an interest- 
ing chapter in the operations of the American Navy. 

George Daly, popular amateur ball player, one of the first to enlist in the Navy after the dec- 
laration of war was assigned to the U. S. S. Mt. Vernon, and was aboard that ship when she 
was torpedoed by a German submarine. The "Mt. Vernon" was formerly the North German 
Lloyd liner, " Kronprinzessin Cecile " and referring to the experiences of the Buffalo men aboard 
that ship on her ill-fated trip, Daly said : 

"One week prior to the outbreak of the European War, the North German Lloyd liner, Kron- 
prinzessin Cecile, steamed out of New York Harbor with $10,000,000 in gold aboard, bound for 
England. Arriving off the coast of the British Isles, her wireless picked up the broadcast message 
that war had been declared between Germany and England. Immediately she was headed back 
toward America, and under full steam she eluded the British navy, and five days later was safely 
interned in Bar Harbor, Me. Two months later American warships escorted her to Boston, where 
she was taken over by the Department of Justice on account of a libel against her for failure to 
deliver the $10,000,000. There she remained as a floating palace of the German captain and crew 
until February 3, 1917, when the United States Government, because of the strained relations 
existing with Germany, ordered all interned German ships manned by Americans, and all German 
seamen interned on shore. This order was carried out six hours later, when a United States Marshal 
boarded the Kronprinzessin Cecile ; but the Germans had received secret information of the order 
and, acting under orders of their Government, they had already wrecked the machineiy of the 
ship to such an extent that their captain, Captain Pollock, declared that the ship could not possibly 
be used by any one for any length of time. He informed the American engineers that it would be 
impossible for them to put the ship into running order, so effectively had he carried out the orders 
of his superiors. Two months later war was declared with Germany, and on May 5th the Kron- 
prinzessin Cecile was taken over by the United States Government. After two months of thorough 
repairing of machinery, and complete conversion into a transport, the "Mount Vernon" was 
put into commission on July 28th by the Nav-y Department. 

"Since her conversion into a transport she has numbered among her passengers Secretary of 
War Baker; Assistant Secretary of the Treasury Crosby; President of the Inter- Ally War Council 
on Purchase and Finance, Colonel E. M. House; Admiral Benson, General Bell, General Bliss, 
and many others of equal fame. On occasion she has made her round trip in two weeks, and been 
on her way across again within three days after docking. 

" Perhaps no ship in the service has been worked harder, and certainly no ship more willingly 
that the Mount Vernon. Of the many thousands of soldiers committed to her care on each trip 
she never lost one by accident, and not over an average of one for each trip by disease. Her 
physical equipment consists generally of all the appliances and conveniences of a modern city. 
Her twelve decks furnish ample space for power plants, refrigerators, stores, repair shops, blowers, 
ventilators, elevators, libraries, telephones, wireless, steam and electric heaters, hospital, church. 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 

^Ki" '-'^-''-t 

-~-^' ■ '^ 

;. ' ■ .;■,• 




fefe- ■ '■ 


Members of the Old 74th in Trench and Bayonet Drill at Camp Wadsworth 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 


school, safety appliances for all on board, and the most effective battle equipment. Three of our 
largest mogul locomotives, each pulling its capacity train load of coal, could not furnish the 
thousands of tons of coal which go into the "Mount Vernon's" bunkers for one round trip to 
Europe. Although over seven hundred feet long, and having a displacement of thirty thousand 
tons, her powerful engines generate forty-five thousand horse power, and drive her through the 
water at a speed of twenty-five miles per hour. Her water-tight integrity has stood the test of 
the most powerful torpedo, and her officers and crew have stood the test of the recent crisis for a 
yet more glorious future. 

"We sailed from Brest on the 4th day of September, 1918, homeward bound, and with us was 
the U. S. S. Agamemnon, being convoyed by six U. S. destroyers. We had on board 300 wounded 
soldiers, 57 of them being "stretcher cases"; also with us U. S. Senators Gore of Oklahoma and 
Lewis of Illinois. 

"The morning of September 5th was bright and sunny, and the sea very calm, and we were 
making about 18 knots per hour. The Agamemnon was traveling on our starboard side, at quite 
some distance ahead of us, with the six destroyers encircled about us. The starboard gun crew 
(No. 5) had the 4 . 00 to 8 . GO o'clock watch that morning, and the number six gun crew, to which 
I was attached, was waiting at ease for the moment of 8 . 00 o'clock to arrive to relieve the number 
5 crew. 

"Suddenly at about ten minutes of eight our No. 5 gunner sighted the periscope of a submarine, 
which appeared off our starboard side, between us and the Agamemnon, at a distance of about 
500 yards. He immediately fired, but the periscope did not remain visible for more than seven 
seconds. At sound of the gun we hastily put on our life preservers and started for our stations. 
We hadn't reached them befoi-e a terrific explosion occurred — the torpedo had reached its mark, 
striking us fairly amidships, just beneath the boiler rooms. Our great ship was fairly lifted out 
of the water, then rolled and tossed and leaped again several times, trying as it seemed to 'break 


Members of 108th Infantry Building a Trench at Camp Wadswuith 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 

^^ J 

The 106th Field Artillery (Old 65th) at Gun Practice on the South Carolina Range 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 


Final Inspection of 108th at Camp Wadsworth, May, 1918, on Eve of Overseas Trip 

her back' at each jump. Finally with great shivering and quaking she righted herself, settling 
some 14 feet at the stern and then listing quite badly. At the first shock and in the rolling that 
followed the men were thrown about the decks, some of them being injured quite severely, and 
I, myself, was thrown some twenty feet to the deck and hurled about. The men finally reached 
their stations and the guns directed salvos at the spot where the submarine periscope had appeared. 
By that time the compartment doors between the bulkheads had been closed to prevent further 
shipping of water; and the destroyers were racing here and there dropping depth bombs. But 
there was no evidence that they had destroyed or disabled the submersible. 

"After things had quieted down somewhat, it was found that thirty-six of our firemen had been 
killed outright, and four so badly injured that they died a few days later at Bi'est. The ship lost 
more than eight hundred tons of coal, had all her upper decks and her keel split, and nearly all 
movable fixtures and appurtenances were overturned, broken or twisted out of shape. Of course, 
our ships and convoy returned to Brest and we made port under our own steam in about 16 hours, 
arriving there at 2.10 A. M. on the following morning." 

Forty Buffalo boys were aboard the "Mt. Vernon" when she was torpedoed, and hundreds 
of other Buffalo and Erie county lads were on other transports engaged in the same sort of 
work. Their experiences did not differ materially, except that the submarines did not succeed 
in disabling many of our transports. 

150 Buffalo's Part in the World War 


THE Government had very few stevedores in the ways when the troops were going over and 
Buffalo sailors, in addition to sailing the ships, loaded the boats and unloaded them at 
Brest and St. Nazaire. 
When the troops were moved up to the port of embarkation it was the Government's policy 
to hold them there for a period of about ten days, during which time every man had a thorough 
physical examination. The boys were not permitted to communicate with their relatives or 
friends, although some devised means of slipping news to the outside world. The idea of secrecy 
was to prevent information as to the time of departure from falhng into the hands of the enemy. 
As the boys went aboard the ship they received a card bearing an inscription of which the follow- 
ing is typical : 


Keep This Card 

Your Sleeping Quarters are in Section No. 3 

Berth No. 139 

You Eat at Mess No. 18 

First Sitting 

In connection with this mess card they were given a set of instructions for conduct aboard the 
ship. These instructions were identical in each case. The following is a copy of the instructions 
issued to the members of Base Hospital No. 23. 

Instructions For Troops 

1 . Every square foot of space on the ship is utilized. This necessitates using, when not on duty, only the quarters 
and deck space assigned you as follows: After well deck, B deck galleries and C deck abaft officers' quarters. 

2 . Use ladders, stairways and passageways assigned you to and from the compartments in which you sleep. 

3 . Visiting in quarters assigned Navy Crew is forbidden. 

4 . Members of Navy Crew are forbidden to visit troop quarters. 

5 . Use garbage cans provided for all waste material. 

6. Throw nothing overboard. 

7 . Do not smoke or show the smallest light on the open decks from sunset to sunrise. The glow of a cigarette may 
enable the enemy to torpedo us. 

8 . Smoking will not be permitted between sunset and sunrise except in officers' quarters. 

9 . No enlisted man will be allowed to have matches in his possession. Smoking lamps will be provided. 

10. As much fresh water will be provided you as the ship can furnish. 

11 . The alarm gongs when sounded mean abandon ship or abandon ship drill. Fall in at your station and await 
orders. In case it should become necessary to abandon ship, do not become panic stricken and crowd ladders and 
boats. Follow the proceedings as quietly as you would for abandon-ship drill. Instructions will come from the 
ship's officers to your own officers when it is time to take to the boats or life rafts. Ships often float for hours 
after being torpedoed. 

12 . Do not under any circumstances open any air ports, water-tight doors or hatches. They will be opened when 
necessary by the Navy Crew. 

13. If you should fall overboard it will more than likely be impossible to stop and pick you up. 

14 . In the danger zone all men of the crew and troops not on duty shall be considered lookouts. Report anything 
suspicious to the nearest lookout station. 

15. A life preserver will be found in each berth. These are in the form of pillows and may be used for that purpose 
also. When you leave the ship, make sure that your life preserver is left in your berth as you found it. If you 
lose your life preserver it may mean that you will have to go without one for the rest of the trip. 

16. While on board this ship you will receive the Navy ration of food. There is a plentiful ration for each man, 
and if you will co-operate with the ship's people in the troop messing system there can be no trouble about any 
of you going short of food. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 


An American Transport with Harljor Escort 

17. Meals will be issued on the cafeteria system, from fifteen serving stations, and troops will use their own field 
mess gear. When "Mess Call" sounds, troops will fall in in the spaces designated by their company officers, 
with their mess gear in hand. You will then file past your own serving station and receive your ration. 
The printed squares on this card are your mess tickets for the meals you are entitled to receive while on board 
this vessel. This card will be on a short loop of cord and will be suspended around the neck. When approaching 
the serving station for your ration, have this card hung outside your clothing, so that it may be taken and punched 
by the non-commissioned officer in charge. Second helpings may be had in almost anything except dessert. Do not 
take more than you really need. Wastefulness on your part means that the quantity of food must be cut down later. 
A space has been provided for washing your mess gear. Make use of it after each meal. 

On account of crowded conditions and insufficient ventilation, it is important that you spend most of your time 
on the open decks. Always take your blankets with you when you go on the open decks. 
Standee bunks must be folded up neatly at all hours of the day while the lights are on. 
Do not spit on the deck. It is a filthy, unsanitary habit which will not be tolerated. 

C. McCauley, Lieut. Comd'r, U. S. N. 

Executice Officer. 

Attached to the foregoing was a card identifying the days of the week. At each meal the card 
was punched. 

Those who landed at Brest received their meals at a common kitchen cared for by the camp 
personnel, but most of the Buffalo men arriving at St. Nazaire found no such arrangement and 
their first duty on disembarking was to set up their company kitchens and make a requisition 
for supplies. They furnished their own rations immediately after entering the camp. The men were 
billeted in French barracks which had been erected at that port. Some, of course remained in these 
embarkation camps longer than others, but most of the troops were out of there in a week or so. 




152 Buffalo's Part in the World War 


BUFFALO drafted men from Camps Dix and Upton had made brief trips home during the 
months of November and December. A football game at Thanksgiving time between the 
Camp Dix team composed of brilliant college players, and the All-Buffalo team brought a 
delegation of possibly 500 drafted men to Buffalo. The game was played at Olympic Park, and 
was won by Camp Dix, primarily through the team work of the soldiers, but especially by the 
individual efforts of Lieut. Mount Pleasant, the Carhsle Indian star who played in the back field 
for the soldier visitors. 

Again, at Christmas time, many of the drafted men were home on ten-day furloughs, but on 
that occasion they were home to say good-by before their departure overseas. The 77th Divi- 
sion, made up of drafted men from New York State, more than 1000 of them from Buffalo and Erie 
County, was the first of the draft divisions to go overseas. It was followed by the 78th Division. 

The first selective service men to go into the 77th Division arrived at Camp Upton in the early 
part of September, 1917. At the same time the advance guard of the 78th Division arrived at 
Camp Dix. Buffalo's first draft contingent went into the 78th Division, at Camp Dix, while the 
New York City men went to Camp Upton. In the forty per cent quota of drafted men which 
left Buffalo in the Fall a portion went to Upton and the balance to Dix. They formed a hetero- 
geneous assortment of unlicked civilians, and included boys of every race, creed and class. Boys 
from the docks mingled with boys from Delaware Avenue and vigorous youngsters from the far 
East Side; Sunday school teachers and prize-fighters and boys from the farms became bunkies. 
It was a typical haul of the draft law dragnet, and it missed no element of the white race in Buffalo 
or the towns. 

Among the units comprised in the 77th Division was the 302d Engineers. When the Division 
was being made ready for overseas service in the latter part of February a special call was made 
for men to fill up the engineer regiment. Buffalo furnished men from Exemption Districts No. 8, 
No. 9 and No. 15. Neither the local boards receiving the call nor the drafted men themselves 
knew the particular purpose of that special call. The men were inducted into the United States 
militaiy sei-vice on February 25th, and the following day were marched to the station behind 
bands and waving colors, proud but sad-hearted relatives and friends. 

The 302nd Regiment of Engineers was organized at Camp Upton upon the airival of those 
men. A month later the regiment moved out for overseas service. The advance guard of the regi- 
ment left Camp Upton early Good Friday morning, March 29, 1918, embarking on the Cunard 
S. S. "Carmania" in New York harbor sailing the same evening for Halifax. They arrived at 
Halifax on Easter Sunday morning. There a convoy was in progress of organization for some 
of the units of the 77th Division, and the "Carmania" with three other liners and an escorting 
British warship, proceeded to Liverpool. 

The convoys of the 77th Division collected in Halifax. They began sailing from New York on 
March 27th directly after the German drive began. The sailings continued until April 1st. In 
the main convoy which left Halifax were nine ships led by an American cruiser. The first of the 
division (Engineers) landed in Liverpool on April 12th and the final convoy arrived on April 19th. 

The voyage of the Engineers, like that of the other units of the Division, was uneventful, except 
for a submarine attack on the morning of April 11th. The torpedo narrowly missed the Carmania, 
but damaged the stern of the escorting warship. Liverpool was reached during the night of April 
12-13th. The 77th Division was the first National Army Division to arrive in France, and the 
302nd Engineers were the first regiment of the Division to cross the ocean. From Liverpool they 
were hurried to Dover, and the following day crossed the Channel to Calais. It was the first 
American regiment to land at Calais for training with the British. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 153 

The Engineers, the first to move, left Calais on April 16th before the entire Division had arrived. 
They left via the box car route for Audruicq and marched to Ruminghem in the Pas-de-Calais 
area, where they had their first experience in billets. The furious bombardments incident to the 
big German drive against Kemmel Hill and Ypres could be plainly heard by the 77th men at 
that training area, and rumors were thick that the Division would soon be in it. They expected 
to be thrown in as victims to check the German rush for the Channel Ports and immediately 
began training under the tutelage of the 39th British Division. 

Lieutenant Karl Wilhelm, of Buffalo, in relating subsequently some of the experiences of the 
Division in that training camp said most of the excitement was made up of rumors. "We saw no 
front line fighting there as a unit," he said, "On two or three occasions we occupied reserve 
trenches behind the British lines and were under spasmodic shell fire which amounted to very 
little. While we were in the billets numerous aeroplane raids took place. Their main objective 
was a Canadian aerodrome about one and one-half miles from us and our casualties were very 

They were billeted in a rest camp, so-called, at that port. There they had their first sight of 
war, for they viewed on all sides the ruined buildings bombed by Boche aviators during the days 
that had gone before. 

They prepared for business by turning in their Springfield rifles and drawing British Enfields. 
Here, too, they parted with their immense barrack bags, the contents of which they had so care- 
fully and discriminatingly acquired. Two outfits for each man were in each bag. They bade good- 
by to the bags forever. In their place, they received gas masks and steel helmets. From Calais 
the Division, minus the Engineers who had gone on ahead, was taken to the Department of Pas 
de Calais, travelling in box cars, which on the previous day had been used for the transportation 
of horses — 40 hommes or 8 cheveaux. 

Walter F. Kenline, a private in the 302nd Engineers, in charge of the records at Regimental 
headquarters, recorded the procedure of the Engineers from that point. He states that on Decora- 
tion Day, May 30, rather suddenly the regiment was ordered to move. That was the same day 
the Regulars over at Chaumont-en-Vixen were ordered to Meaux to stop the rush on Paris. The 
National Army men up in the Mt. Kemmel neighborhood, however, were ordered out on a long, 
tiring march, well made, which took them to the vicinity of Locquinghem and Belle, a new Amer- 
ican training area, which the Engineers proceeded to put in order. On June 7th, they moved 
again, this time by train, to a railhead near St. Pol back of the Arras front. The regiment then 
entrained again to leave the British for the so-called American sector. A three day ride, begun 
June 10th, took them to Thaon-les-Vosges. On June 17th, Regimental Headquarters, Head- 
quarters Company and Company F marched to Baccarat relieving similar elements of the 117th 
Engineers (Rainbow Division). The remainder of the Division followed three days later. 

154 Buffalo's Part in the World War 


DON Martin spent January and February in and about London where he learned London men 
and London ways. He was schooling himself for intelligent work among the Allied forces. 
It is necessary to see a country and to know its people to write clearly of their activities. 
Early in March Martin crossed the Channel to France. American soldiers and sailors were to 
be seen at that time in Paris and the Channel ports. 

As American officers and members of the regular army were making preparations to leave for 
the front, Martin was visiting the points of interest in the great Parisian city for which the German 
troops were headed and to save which it then seemed was to be the first American task on French 
soil. Martin's description of that point of American interest was given in letters to his daughter: 

"Paris, March 11, 1918. 
Hotel Crillon. 

"I brought my typewriter along with me and so you are liable to get another long, long letter. It may be full 
of mistakes because the machine is half locked up and the table on which it stands is so high that it is very awk- 
ward for me. 

"However I decided to tell you about my first visit to Paris and the trip from London here. I have been in Paris 
less than 24 hours but I have already seen enough to understand why it is called the most beautiful city in the world. 
Whenever I have been in other cities — say Chicago, Philadelphia or London, I have wondered why people there 
didn't move to New York; I don't have the disposition to ask people here such a question. The city is just dotted 
with beautiful buildings each of which is of historical interest. I walked around two or three hours this afternoon 
with the manager of the Paris office of the Herald and he was able to point out many of the chief places. We saw 
Notre Dame, the Hotel de Ville, the Chamber of Deputies, the Magdalene Church or Cathedral, and walked all 
through the famous Latin Quarter. I sat on the piazza of the Grand Hotel in the Rue de Capucines and drank a 
glass of lemonade, and walked through the Rue de la Paix, the street which has all the jewelry shops. I never saw 
anything like the displays. There has been a heavy fog all day so I have seen the city at a disadvantage but to- 
morrow probably the sun will be shining and I will walk around some more. 

"I started in by having the best breakfast I have had since I left New York. Here the restaurants serve you as 
if they were glad to do it. In London the managers and waiters serve you because, apparently, they have to do it. 
There is about the same difference between London and Paris as there is between a burdock and a lily of the valley. 
The waiters in this hotel saw that I was an American at once. They can always tell it and they are glad when they 
get one to wait on. I told mine I wanted breakfast — although it was lunch time — and he suggested an orange, filet 
of sole, fried potatoes and chocolate. It was all fine. There is no sugar to be had here now. There is no milk served 
after 9 in the morning. The orange was good and the chocolate was sweetened in some way so it all tasted very 
good. But the cost is very high. My bill this morning was $2.75. 

"For dinner I went with Mr. Price, the Paris manager, to the famous Prunier restaurant. Mr. Bennett occa- 
sionally goes there when he is in Paris. We telephoned to reserve a table. One has to do this because the applicants 
for tables are so numerous. We had Portuguese oysters, roast beef and potatoes, braised endive and a fancy choco- 
late pudding. The bill here for two was about 25 francs, or slightly more than $6. Everything is high everywhere 
in Paris because of the scarcity of everything. 

"After dinner Mr. Price went to the office and I came to my room where I am now. There is nothing to do in 
the evening in Paris. The theaters are open but I don't care to go to a show I can't understand. The restaurants 
all close at nine o'clock and the houses and the streets are all dark. The Germans have been bombing Paris lately 
and people are keeping the city as dark as possible. I shall sit in my room till about half past ten when I shall get 
into the subway — right near the hotel — and go to the Herald office at No. 38 Rue du Louvre for a half hour or so. 

"This hotel, I find, is the very best hotel in Paris. Mr. Baker, Secretary of War, is staying here now. General 
Pershing stayed here and all the diplomats from most of the important countries stay here. It overlooks the Tuil- 
eries and is a magnificent building. Mr. Bennett believes in doing things up right. I shan't know what my program 
will be until I hear from him. I wired him last night — he stays in Beaulieu on the Mediterranean — that I was here 
and now I shall sit around or go sightseeing till he tells me what he has in mind. I rather expect that in a few 
days I shall be on my way to the American front. 

"Paris is filled with American soldiers. I must have seen a thousand to-day. I met two or three — yes four or 
five — men I knew in the United States. 

"There was no sea at all on the trip across the -Channel so I was not sick. I enjoyed the day in Havre. That is 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 


a very picturesque old city, with the principal business street facing the harbor and sailing ships moored just across 
the street from the stores. In a big park nearby there were about 50 women selling flowers. The French are great 
for flowers. I ate in a big restaurant — Tortoni's, which seats about 1,000 persons, and walked all over the principal 
parts of the city before leaving at five in the afternoon. The train on which I traveled from Havre stopped just 
once between Havre and Paris and that was at Rouen. 

An American Correspondent in the Argonne 

Watching a skirmish near Grand Pre 

"Before I leave here Dorothy I shall write you another letter but it very likely will not be a long one. You will 
show this letter to Mother and the rest of the folks and they will know all about my trip up to date. 

With Love, Dad." 

Circumstances of that night caused Don to write a letter to his daughter on the following day: 


Paris, March 12, 1918. 
Hotel Crillon. 

"I guess your Dad is a hoodoo. Wherever he goes there seems to be an air raid. Last night when I finished the 
letter to you I started down to post it and the maid was talking like a streak and waving her hands. I thought she 
was having a fit of some new kind. But I discovered it was merely her French way of telling me that there was an 
air raid going on. They are not used to them in Paris as they are in London, and moreover the people here are very, 
very excitable, especially on air raid nights. I had heard the " alert " signal given but didn't know what it was. In Lon- 
don it is called "Take Cover". Here a siren blows. It is about like the whistle on the Eureka shop. It is attached 
to a steam engine which rushes about the streets. It was a dark night, but a few stars were shining and a raid was 
hardly looked for. However it came and was a very fierce one — by far the worst Paris has known. The figures of 
persons killed have not been given out but it is said the fatalities were quite numerous. I heard bombs strike in this 
vicinity. I went down in the lobby and stayed there from a quarter to ten to a quarter to one o'clock. A lot of 
most distinguished Frenchmen were sitting about and a good many prominent Americans too. I found a man from 
Trenton and another from Iowa whom I knew. The lobby was darkened and the lights in all the rooms were shut 
off. During a lull in the raid I and two other men started across to Palace de la Concorde to see where a bomb was 
supposed to have fallen but it was so dark we lost our way and returned. This hotel is right in the heart of the 
very exclusive section of Paris. It is close to the Tuileries Gardens, the Champs Elysees and a lot of other famous 
and beautiful spots. Paris is rather excited to-day over last night's performance and right now people are rather 

156 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

expecting another raid to-night. These raids are getting to be terrible things. People are getting very sick of them 
and I guess when the war is all over and everyone understands everything that has happened the world will know 
why people grew tired of them. The Germans have no consideration for women, or children, hospitals, churches or 
anything else. They will have to pay dearly for their barbarism some day. 

"I have spent a good part of the day making arrangements to go to the front. Mr. Bennett wired me to make 
arrangements to go about France with Mr. Baker, Secretary of War, who is here, but it was too late to make the 
arrangements. Only the three news associations were allowed to send men. I got a telegram from Mr. Bennett to 
see his lawyer here and to have him make arrangements for me to go to the front. I shall probably get a pass for a 
month to start with. Mr. Bennett wants me to go to the front, look it over and tell what I think ought to be done. I 
imagine he is trying to make up his mind whether he wants to spend all the money it will cost to keep me at the 
front right along. You see automobile hire costs about $100 or $150 a week alone and there are other very large 
items. However, unless an air bomb gets me, I shall probably be going far over in France within three or four days 
— maybe sooner — and you will get a letter from me where the glare of the bombardments may be seen. It is not 
so terribly far away. The nearest point in the battle line is only 60 miles from Paris, but where I shall go is con- 
siderably farther than that. 

"Yesterday I believe I told you that Paris is far more beautiful than all the other cities. To-night I can empha- 
size that. Take the Rue Rivoli for instance, Dorothy. That runs along the Tuileries Gardens for almost a mile. 
The buildings are all six stories high, are all the same, and all have marble colonnades in front of them. There are 
no high buildings. This hotel, for instance, looks like a ruin on the very outside but it is beautiful just the same 
and inside it is as fine as anything in New York. I sent you a post card giving a picture of it. I took an open taxi 
this afternoon, it being warm and sunny, and drove all through the Champs Elysees and the Avenue Bois du Bou- 
logne. They are magnificent. Everything seems to have been built and laid out with the aim of pleasing the eye. 

"For dinner I went to a place called the Chatham Grill and had a splendid dinner — porterhouse steak, fine fried 
potatoes, endive salad and a lot of fruit all mixed up. The cooks here certainly know how to get up things nicely. 
There is no sugar or butter but the French are so clever one doesn't miss them. I have been over pretty much of 
the city and can get around all right without a guide. I wish I could speak French. Most of the waiters speak 
Enghsh and every hotel has a clerk who can speak English. The chief clerk here to-day appeared with an officer's 
uniform. He had been on sick leave for five months and to-morrow starts again for the front. 

"The people are tired of war just the same. I don't blame them. One sees plenty of one legged men, and women 
in mourning, in Paris. 

"I must stop writing such long letters to you or you will have to stay out of school to read them. I wish I could 
get a letter or two myself but it will be a long time before I receive one, I suppose. 

"Here's a hug and a kiss. Dad." 

Don Martin spent the next few months in army camps and the cities of Northern France 
which the Germans had not yet occupied. He visited Brest, St. Nazaire, Bordeaux and then 
the more quiet sectors of the battlefront. Gradually he grew intimate with the entire war program 
and rapidly advanced to a position among the foremost war correspondents in Europe. His 
articles in the Herald were reproduced in the Buffalo Enquirer and were extremely interesting, 
picturing as they did the fields into which the American boys of the regular army and the vast 
draft and national guard forces then rapidly assembling would soon be plunged. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 157 


A MERICAN soldiers had reached France in June, 1917. The regulars and the marines, making 
Za up the First and Second Army Divisions: The 42nd Division, (Rainbow Division) con- 
■*- -*- taining the 165th N. Y. Infantry in which William J. Donovan, formerly captain of Buffalo's 
Troop I, was a major; 41st (Sunset) Division and the 26th, a New England National Guard di\i- 
sion, to which Col. Pooley was later attached, trained through the Fall and Winter behind the 
lines in France, gaining a knowledge of the newer warfare from the war itself. The First Division 
went into the front line in the Vosges in October, 1917, but the Engineers of the 26th Division 
were the first to take part in action, being engaged with the British at Cambrai. 

On March 1st, General Pershing had four trained divisions ready to meet any demands of battle, 
and more rapidly approaching that point of training. It was then contemplated that an American 
sector would be formed on the front and that the United States contingent would formally enter the 
front line under its own flag, commanded by its own officers and manned by its own men, supplied 
by its own trains and cared for in its own hospital — an American sector in every way. The realiza- 
tion of that condition was the ambition of the American fighting men in France. The four divi- 
sions then ready were made up principally of regulars and marines, numbering among the latter 
many Buffalo men, who a few months before had been at work in some office, railroad yard or 

On March 21st Germany began her Spring drive, a move which was anticipated by the French 
and English commanders. They had failed to anticipate its severity, however, and the German 
forces, materially strengthened because of the impotency of Russia, swept through the territory 
they had abandoned the previous year and extended their lines at will in Picardy against the 
British forces. 

While the Germans failed to break the British line, the British retreat was almost a rout. In 
the face of that offensive, the idea of an American sector was abandoned and an agreement was 
quickly reached to unite the Allied forces under a single command. General Foch was chosen 
Commander-in-Chief of the Allied armies. General Pershing placed himself and the American 
troops at the disposal of General Foch on March 28th.* 

The first German blow had been struck at the English near La Fere and was carried through 
Picardy to Cantigny and Montdidier. Another wedge was driven into the French between Soissons 
and Rheims on May 27th. Up in Belgium, Mt. Kemmel had been captured, and the Channel 
Ports threatened. The attack between Soissons and Rheims was a drive at Paris, and by May 
30th, the French were offering no serious hindrance to the progress of the German mihtary machine 
though fighting valiantly every inch of the way. On June 1st the Paris drive had reached Chateau 
Thierry, but the main blow was to be delivered east of Rheims. 

March and April had been thus taken up by the Germans in a terrific assault on the British, 
while May saw the French lines steadily pushed back. General Haig, in command of the British, 
had advised his men that they were fighting "with your backs to the wall"; and the French on 
the Marne were shouting again the 1916 battle cry of Verdun "They shall not pass." 

Buffalo draft boards, with the other draft boards of the country, were turning out men for the 
camps at that time as rapidly as the Selective Service machinery would work. These embryo 
soldiers were hurried across the ocean just as quickly as ships could be obtained to carry them 
across. The call from the Allies was for men — more men — and more men. Drafted men were 

*0n March 28, I placed at the disposal of Marshal Foch. who had been agreed upon as Commander-in-Chief of the Allied Armies, all of our 
forces to be used as he might decide. At his request the first division was transferred from the Toul sector to a position in reserve at Chaumont en 
Vexin. As German superiority in numbers required prompt action, an agreement was reached at the Abbeville conference of the Allied premiers 
andlcommanders and myself on May 2 by which British shipping was to transport 10 American divisions to the British Army area, where they 
were to be trained and equipped, and additional British shipping was to be provided for as many divisions as possible for use elsewhere. 

(From General Pershing's report to Secretary of War. Nov. 20, 1918.) 

158 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

swarming into Europe. The National Guard regiments, likewise, were hurried overseas. The big 
troop movement from the United States warranted General Pershing in a freer use of the older 
division. While the new arrivals would need some preliminary training, the fact that reserves 
were at hand gave the High Command an opportunity to throw a greater number of American 
divisions into the front lines. 

The call from overseas had been met by America. Not only were men being supplied, but the 
shipyards were turning out more ships. The industries were turning out more supplies. The 
Liberty Loan and Red Cross drives were multiplying our money millions for war use. 

The 27th Division carrying the old 74th, some of them in the 108th Infantry, some in the 55th 
Pioneers, some in the 102nd Engineers and others in the 102d Ammunition Train; the old 65th, 
now the 106th Field Artillery, and old Troop I, now the 102d Trench Mortar Battery, left Spartan- 
burg, N. C, with the June troop movement for service on the British front. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 



RETURNING again to affairs at home; on the 6th day of May, 1918, Elliott C. McDougal 
resigned and was succeeded as United States Fuel Administrator for Erie County by Howard 
A. Forman. 

Mr. Forman brought to the Fuel Administration, in addition to a long successful business 
career, an expert knowledge of natural gas obtained from many years' practical experience in 
the business. This knowledge was of great value, as the natural gas problem was an integral part 
of Buffalo's domestic fuel problem. After D. W. Cooke succeeded Mr. Wiggin as State Adminis- 
trator, he invited Mr. Forman to attend the weekly meetings of the Executive Committee and 
thereafter all natural gas questions were referred to him. 

Mr. Forman appointed T. W. Hendrick his deputy, retained Miss Kelley as office manager, 
and moved the offices from the Prudential Building to the gi-ound floor of the Liberty Building, 
more commodious quarters being necessary to accommodate the public and to provide for the 
increase in business. The work of the entire county was administered directly from this office, 
with the exception of the help given by Local Deputy C. W. Ellis of Lackawanna and A. M. 
Eberhard of Tonawanda. 

The Administration at Washington issued an order on January 17th, 1918, calling for the 
stoppage of work by all industries except those absolutely essential to the war. This was one of 
the most drastic orders issued in connection with the military program and was necessary because 
of the enormously increased demand for fuel for war making purposes, combined with the severest 
winter beyond the recollection of the present generation. Blizzard after blizzard blocked the 

Mess Time at One of The American Training Camps 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 

A Winter Draft Contingent 

railways and hindered all forms of outdoor activities. There were four hundred eighty ships 
loaded with supplies for our armies and allies waiting to be bunkered. Industries essential to the 
war were at the point of closing and the railroad lines were becoming more and more congested. 
The order closed all industries for five days, and on each succeeding Monday for three Mondays. 
It accomplished its purpose; within three weeks, four hundred eighty ships were on their way to 
Europe and there was no further delay in ships going to France on account of coal from that day. 
It was not thought wise to tell the country generally of the military i-easons for this order and 
while there was some grumbling, Buffalo accepted the order and obeyed it loyally. 

The bituminous situation gradually bettered itself, but the problem was not entirely solved 
until the following October. All through the summer it was necessary for Mr. Forman to divert 
coal from one factory to another, to place embargoes on certain factories that had a supply on 
hand in order that all might be kept going. This entailed a great deal of work, but in the end 
successfully solved the problem, so that after October soft coal became plentiful and there was 
enough for all. By the first of February soft coal was so plentiful that the Administration at 
Washington issued an order removing all restrictions as to price, deliveries, etc., as of that date. 

Buffalo's anthracite situation is a peculiar one for several reasons. First, because Buffalo, 
situated a short distance on the main line from the anthracite fields, must wait for her coal until 
New England, the lake shipments, Canada and the long hauls generally are taken care of. There 
are usually good shipments in April and May but consumers who were not supplied then had to 
wait for all or part of their coal. After the experience of the winter before most people were not 
in the mood to wait. In the spring Washington issued an order allowing domestic consumers two- 
thirds of their requirements. It became necessary later on to limit the amount so that domestic 
consumers could have but four tons each, and to prohibit any deliveries to churches, apartment 
houses, hotels, theaters, saloons, etc., and to prohibit deliveries to people who had previously 
burned gas and were equipped to burn gas. In this way all consumers were provided with some 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 161 

coal by the time when cold weather usually begins. The anthracite situation became most critical 
during the month of November. Buffalo had had some early cold weather and a great many people 
were sick or convalescent from influenza. Most of the domestic sizes of anthracite were going up the 
Lakes. Buffalo was receiving only a meager amount and very little of this was suitable for domestic 
use. For a period of about thirty days it became necessary to prohibit dealers making any deliv- 
eries except on an order of the Administration showing that it was for emergency purposes and then 
the amount delivered was limited to one ton. Before issuing an emergency order a doctor's certifi- 
cate or some strong reason must be furnished the Administration. It is estimated that during No- 
vember there were continually in the fuel office from fifty to one hundred people and that three hun- 
dred or f oui- hundred emergency orders were issued daily. As the weather continued mild all through 
the winter the restrictions were gradually removed and everyone in the end had all the coal required. 

For a great many years a good many people have depended on natural gas for heat. The gas 
has been gradually failing and it became apparent that some substitute must be made. 

Again, the large increase in Buffalo's population, due primarily to the influx of workers who 
came here to work in the war factories, helped along the fuel shortage. 

New York State's anthracite allotment was increased twelve per cent over the amount re- 
ceived two years before. Due to the reasons above enumerated, Mr. Forman succeeded in 
obtaining a twenty-four per cent increase in Buffalo's allotment. For a severe winter this would 
not have been sufficient to take care of everyone, so supphes of coke were shipped in and, in 
addition, wherever it was possible small sizes of anthracite were mixed with the larger sizes. 

As previously stated, "lightless nights" were inaugurated November 15, 1917. On April 22, 1918, 
this order was temporarily suspended. A new order, effective July 24, stipulated that the use of 
light produced by coal, gas, oil or other fuel for illuminating or displaying advertisements, an- 
nouncements or signs, or for the external ornamentation of any building would be discontinued 
entirely on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday of each week. This order was immedi- 
ately put into effect in Buffalo and, with one or two exceptions, was loyally carried out by the 
merchants and citizens generally. The police force under Chief Girvin gave valuable aid and by 
the end of the first week of its trial Buffalo was absolutely dark. This continued until November 
11, when a change was made allowing the illumination of store windows during business hours. 
On November 20, due to the fact that the bituminous coal problem had been solved, an order 
was issued entirely discontinuing "lightless nights." 

On August 27, 1918, as a war emergency measure, a request was issued to the people that the 
use of all motor propelled vehicles, with certain limited exceptions, be discontinued on Sundays 
until further notice. This was found necessary because the stocks of gasoline, particularly on the 
Atlantic Seaboard, had been depleted to such an extent as to require immediate action to protect 
the supply in France. The response to this request in Buffalo was instantaneous, the compliance 
almost unanimous. Best estimates show Sunday' motoring in Buffalo to have decreased ninety- 
eight to ninety-nine per cent. "Gasless Sundays" continued until October 20, when it was esti- 
mated that a saving had been effected of at least one million barrels of gasoline, from which it 
was known that more than five hundred thousand barrels, or ten shiploads, had been sent over- 
seas. In carrying out this request the police force again gave valuable assistance. 

It was known at Washington from the very start that the solution of the world war problem 
would depend on the solution of America's fuel problem. Fuel, the driving force of the war, must 
be available in quantities sufficient to insure victory. Without fuel the vast and intricate machinery 
of war industries would stop. The production of coal in every other belligerent nation had de- 
creased from twenty-five to fifty per cent over the production of pre-war days. In 1916 America 
had produced a little more than five hundred million tons of soft coal. From April 1, 1918, to 
April 1, 1919, it was estimated that we must produce seven hundred thirty-five million tons, of 
which six hundred thirty-five million tons must come from the bituminous fields, notwithstanding 
the fact that thousands of miners from these districts had joined the colors. The fact that the 
soft coal problem was solved by October, 1918, shows the work accomplished. 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 

New 74th Regiment 

During January and February mild weather continued until the anthracite requirements were 
all taken care of and anthracite also became plentiful. Washington therefore issued its final order 
decreeing that all restrictions as to delivery, price, etc., of anthracite were removed as of March 1. 
The Buffalo office was closed as of that date and its records shipped to Washington. Its work 
was completed and there was no legal problem, or unfinished business of any kind left over. 

In closing it is only just to state that the willing co-operation, help and advice given the Ad- 
ministration by the coal dealers of Buffalo materially assisted in the success the Administration 
attained. This willing co-operation could not have been purchased at any price nor enforced by 
Federal laws that might have been passed, but was a part of the contribution of patriotic citizens 
to the winning of the war. 

I'.UFFALo's Part in the World War 163 


WHEN Congress and the American people fully awoke to the fact that war was here with all its 
exactions and sacrifices, not the last to realize the needs of the hour, and among the first 
to respond to the call for service, were the women of Buffalo and Erie County. Organiza- 
tions sprang up over night for relief work ; the production of sweaters, helmets, socks and gloves 
were among the early fruits of the patriotic effort of Buffalo women. Funds began to grow for 
the Belgian, French and Syrian sufferers under the impetus of women. Church and fraternal 
societies formed war working organizations from among their women auxiliaries, until every 
locality had an enthusiastic force of women workers doing their share toward winning the war. 

To increase the efficiency of that work, the Motor Corp girls came into the field, a new move- 
ment, something in advance, an agency through which the various locality movements could be 
brought into immediate and effective touch, one with the other, and finally all, with a great 
central agency — the Red Cross. 

As men were called away from their diverse and several occupations, girls stepped forward to 
take their places. Many cities employed women conductors on the street cars. The elevators in 
the office-buildings and hotels were soon operated by women. Women for a time served, in Buffalo, 
at the task of collecting ashes and garbage, wheeling the refuse from back yards to the curb from 
which point men loaded it on the wagons. On the farms women workers rapidly stepped into the 
places theretofore filled by men, and the farm work of the country while supervised by men was 
largely performed by women. It was a substantial and a difficult work women accomplished in 
the production of food and clothing and supplies. Wherever commerce or industry showed the 
need they kept the wheels in motion, and they played no small part in the affairs of the country 
during the period of the war. 

When the American troops went overseas the need for American hospitals and American nurses 
was apparent, and these the Red Cross sought to supply. The girls who left Buffalo and the 
surrounding towns to serve as Red Cross and Army nurses rendered a faithful and valorous 
service as the record of the Red Cross, embodied in another chapter, so clearly and concisely 

But canteens, also, had to be established. The fighting man must not be entirely cut off from 
the comforts he found at home; he was not to be left to his own resources. In his days of hard- 
ship and struggle and strife he was to find that the American girls would cross the ocean with 
him and stand by his side wherever duty might call them. On his way to the fighting line, he 
was encouraged by a handshake, a cup of chocolate, a smile, a cigarette, and a Godspeed from 
an American girl who, too, had dared the Hun, and who was prepared to make whatever sacrifice 
need be made in order that all the world might be safe for Democracy. On his way back from 
the field of battle, wounded, the canteen workers were there to lessen his pain by little acts of 
kindness and consolation which only a woman can give. 

Buffalo girls were not slow to go overseas in that work. Among the first to leave were Miss 
Alice Lord O'Brian and Miss Anna P. Rochester for the American Red Cross, the last named 
serving later with the Smith College Red Cross Unit; Miss Margaret F. Rochester, Y. M. C. A. 
Canteen Directrice and Miss Doris Kellogg who went over with a motor repair organization 
but was transferred first to Mrs. Vanderbilt's hospital in Paris, and later to canteen work for 
the Red Cross. Other Buffalo women who gave their services to the Government overseas under 
the auspices of the American Red Cross were: Mary Bissell, Helen Boechat, Emily Coit, Sue 
Churchill, Orpha Gerrans, Mary F. Houghton, Lillian Mugler, Clara Michael, Edwine Michael, 
Margaret Morrison, Dorothy Palmer, Mrs. Herman Seelbach, Dorothea Park Lewis, Katherine 
Park Lewis, Mai-jory F. Sawyer, Xenia Slopey, Mrs. Elizabeth Slopey, Mildred Windsor, 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 

Buffalo Motor Corps Girls at Drill and on Parade 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 165 

Mrs. John Knox Freeman, Dr. Regina Flood Keyes and Mrs. George W. Davenport. Mrs. 
Freeman was later decorated by the Serbian Government. 

Helen Crosby and Bessie Vine went overseas under the auspices of other organizations but 
were transferred to the Red Cross after their arrival in Europe. 

For the most part, the girls who went into foreign canteen work were young women of wealth 
and social position. In addition, they had a great deal of what we are in the habit of calling 
good old American grit. No namby-pamby girl would attempt it; a girl lacking in means could 
scarcely afford the venture. Buffalo produced its quota of courageous American girls who were 
willing to give up the comforts of home and loved ones and face all the hardships and dangers 
which field work of that sort necessarily produced. 

During her period of service in France, Miss O'Brian trained 85 girls in canteen work, and for 
her services throughout the period of the war was decorated by the French Government. She 
had left Buffalo early in September, 1917, and sailed from New York on the "Espagne" on the 
17th, arriving at Bordeaux on the 26th day of September. After about a month in Paris, she 
went with five other girls, to open a canteen at St. Germain-des-Fosses. That canteen was for- 
mally opened on the 11th day of November, 1917, just a year prior to the armistice, and was 
the third French canteen to be opened by the American Red Cross. It was situated at a large 
railroad junction in the central part of France, and, while in its earlier days it fed not more than 
two or three hundred soldiers a day, it gradually grew until the canteen was feeding upward of 
2,500 soldiers daily. Miss O'Brian worked at that canteen for the greater part of her time in 
France, leaving on September 12th, the date of the St. Mihiel offensive, answering a call for vol- 
unteer hospital workers at the front. While detailed with an evacuation hospital unit near Nancy 
she was thrown from a truck and sustained a broken arm which necessitated her return to Paris 
for medical attention. The rest of her time was spent in the conduct of Red Cross hotels in and 
near Paris. She left there on March 23d, 1919, for England, whence she sailed for home. 

Anna P. Rochester was another Buffalo girl who went to France with the first unit of laywomen 
to be sent across by the American Red Cross. She left here in September, 1917. 

Miss Rochester had a vast amount of experience in Red Cross work prior to her departure. 
Beginning in March, 1916, and until June of the same year, she was an assistant director in the 
planning of work and preparation of material for volunteer workers who were making surgical 
dressings at the Buffalo Chapter of the Red Cross work rooms in Main Street. From June until 
October, 1916, she was engaged in the arduous task of organizing the Red Cross work rooms at 
Lee, Mass., remaining there until the new quarters were in efficient operation. 

Miss Rochester returned to Buffalo in October of 1916 and became Assistant Director of Vol- 
unteer Workers for Buffalo Chapter A. R. C. and took charge of the packing department where 
all the surgical dressings, patients' clothing and hospital linen for the use of Base Hospital 23 was 
packed for shipment. The work rooms were situated first in Chippewa Street and later in 
Delaware Avenue. 

Along with other Buffalo girls, she had been thus especially active in the Red Cross work of 
preparation on this side of the ocean and when she arrived in France in October, 1917, she was 
numbered among the best equipped girls in overseas service and was assigned to work in the 
Railroad Station Canteen at St. Germain-des-Fosses which was open day and night feeding 
French troops ("La Cantine des Deux Drapeaux"). 

In March, 1918, Miss Rochester was made Co-Directrice of the Red Cross Rest Station, being 
a canteen, dormitory and infirmary at Nantes on the line of communication for American troops. 
At that station she, with other girls, fried thousands of dozens of eggs and made hundreds of gal- 
lons of coffee for the soldiers as they passed back and forth from the front lines. 

In July Miss Rochester was attached to the Smith College Unit and did emergency relief work 
among the American troops. They established a canteen at Beauvois, back of the Soissons front, 
and made it a club for English speaking soldiers. The College Unit was also organized into a 
Visiting Group, which visited every American and Britisher in the ten big French hospitals located 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 167 

at Beauvois. These trips were made every day with a view of encouraging the boys and rendering 
such assistance as they could in the way of communicating with relatives and obtaining any little 
necessity of which the boys stood in want. During the month of August they were moved up to 
Chateau Thierry and there fed and administered to all the wounded brought in from the surround- 
ing territory to be evacuated by train. They did considerable emergency work, also, up near the 
hnes at Coincy. 

While stationed at Chateau Thierry Miss Rochester made four trips down the Marne to Paris 
with boat loads of wounded soldiers, very many of them coming at that time from the 77th Di\'i- 
sion, and among them Carl Johndahl, Buffalo soldier who was severely wounded on the Vesle. 
In fact, most of the men that Miss Rochester took down on boats to Paris were members of the 
77th Division who were injured in the fighting at Bazoches and Fismes on the Vesle. Many 
wounded men of the 28th Division, the Pennsylvania National Guard men, were also carried down 
on those boats. 

During the month of September and up until the Armistice was signed in November, the 
Smith College Unit, of which Miss Rochester was one of the most active members, was located 
behind the Meuse-Argonne Drive and there they did exceptionally good work. With one other 
girl. Miss Rochester established canteens for the wounded at five evacuation hospitals located 
at Froidos, Fleury, Les Islettes and Varennes. She was at the last named camp when the Armistice 
was signed. These girls lived in tents from August through November; in fact, until they were 
returned to the hospital work in Paris, preparatory to their return to America. 

Miss Rochester's aunt, Margaret F. Rochester, went abroad as a Y. M. C. A. Secretary and 
became Directrice of a Y. M. C. A. Canteen for convalescent soldiers at Neuilly-sur-Seine. 

Miss Margaret Rochester sailed for France, June 11th, 1918, and shortly after her arrival in 
Paris opened the canteen at Neuilly-sur-Seine, and thousands of men were received there. For- 
tunately, it was possible to secure quarters in a building opposite the large American hospital 
known as Ambulance No. 1, so the cripples, on their first walks, could get over to Miss Rochester's 
canteen and enjoy the easy chairs, books, papers, magazines, writing materials, games, canteen 
supplies, piano, victrola and other things provided for their comfort. 

Here also they enjoyed Sunday evening services, and frequently musical and dramatic enter- 
tainments given during the week. Miss Rochester remained here until May, 1919, when the 
hospital having been closed, there was no further need for this canteen. She was then made 
Directrice of a Y. M. C. A. hut at the American Military Prison installed in the Prison de la 
Petite Roquette in Paris. There a large room in the barracks she converted into a recreation 
room for the soldier guards and trusty prisoners, who were very appreciative of that home-like 
spot in the midst of their grim surroundings. That canteen of which she was in charge at the 
time this publication went to press, was well equipped with library, games, piano, etc. Entertain- 
ments for the men still held there were frequently given. 

The work of the Buffalo canteen girls overseas constitutes a most interesting chapter in the 
history of Buffalo and Buffalonians during the period of the war. The nature of that work is 
graphically told in the letters which Doris Kellogg penned to her mother, Mrs. Spencer Kellogg, 
and to other members of her family from the various canteens and hospitals in France where 
she served. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 169 


IN 1914, the Prince of Wales Patriotic Refief Fund, of which Edward J. Kingston was President, 
had for its object the collection of funds for the relief of English soldiers engaged in the war. 
In January, 1917, Frank L. Talbot, who was one of the managers of the Detroit Bazaar, was 
asked to come to Buffalo relative to holding a similar bazaar in Buffalo. In February, 1917, a 
contract was made between Mr. Talbot and the members of the above organization, and, to avoid 
personal liability, on March 14, 1917, a corporation was formed known as the Allied Relief Com- 
mittee, Inc. The incorporators thereof were: Henry G. Anderson, Edward K. Kingston, William 
Atkinson, Frank Keller, Frank H. Callan, and Alfred L. Karrison. After said corporation was 
formed, the individual men who had made the contract with said Frank L. Talbot assigned said 
contract to said Allied Relief Committee, Inc., and all the money of said bazaar was handled 
under that corporation. 

Norman A. MacDonald of the Citizens Commercial Trust Co. was made Treasurer, and all 
moneys were deposited to the credit of said Allied Relief Committee, Inc., in the Citizens Commer- 
cial Trust Co. The entrance of the United States in the World War influenced the original pro- 
moters of the bazaar to unite the peoples of various nationalities in Buffalo to participate in the 
Bazaar. An Executive Committee was formed and consisted of three members of each nationality, 
with power to select the various committees. The title of the Bazaar selected was"The American 
AlHed Exposition and Bazaar." A. A. Landon, President of the Chamber of Commerce, was elected 
President, Roy Crandall, Director of Publicity, Maxwell M. Nowak, Chairman Executive Com- 
mittee, and Mrs. Kenry Altman unanimously appointed General Chairman, Women's Advisory 
Board. The Bazaar was most artistic and a financial success, with booths representing the follow- 
ing peoples: American, English, Scotch, Welch, French, Canadian, Armenians, Roumanians, Poles, 
Syrians, Isle of Man, Slovak, Belgians, Italians, and, two weeks before the Bazaar opened, the 
Orpheus and the Irish joined the Exposition. In addition, there was a Blue Cross and Red Star 
booth and the British Imperial forces in India under the charge of Ruston Rustomjec. The 
Red Cross and Orpheus handed over their funds to the General Committee. In the short 
space allotted this chapter, it would be impossible to enumerate all of the interesting incidents 
and characteristics of the beautiful picture presented which greeted the eye on entering the 
Broadway Auditorium. The vast ceiling represented an American flag carried out in Red, White 
and Blue electric lights. The perfect exhibit of trenches and the Canadian War Exhibit were of 
an educational nature and the consensus of opinion was that the Bazaar did much to bring the 
people of this city to a realization of the fact that only through unity could the great task for 
victory be accomplished. 

Polish night held in the large pavilion was a historic day for the Poles in Buffalo, because it 
was the first occasion that linked them with other nationalities united in all projects of the war pro- 
gram. Some 6,000 Poles, including Polish soldiers, presented their national colors and American 
flags, to the accompaniment of the solemn Polish national air, to the officers and invited guests 
on the platform. Speeches were made by Maxwell Nowak, A. A. Landon, Mrs. Kenry Altman, and 
Rev. Anthony Majewski. 

Italian night brought together thirty-two Italian societies, and it was said that 5,800 Itahans 
were present. 

Great disappointment was felt that Ex-President Roosevelt could not open the Bazaar. 

English night had as its honor guests ex-Ambassador Gerard and Mr. James Bech, and the 
Chaplain of the Royal Guards. 

French afternoon was made very successful by the presence of Yvette Guilbert. In apprecia- 
tion of her gratuitous services, the French Committee gave her $1,500 for the support of 150 

170 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

little French children Madame Guilbert was personally caring for in France. The "Welsh Doll," 
representing Premier Lloyd George's daughter, proved a great attraction and the $3,000 sent 
by this booth to the Lloyd George American Fund was acknowledged in the following letter: 

"This Committee can confidently state that the money sent to our Prime Minister has been of great and contin- 
uous value in assisting the Welsh people in meeting the difficulties caused by the war. Has brought relief and 
restored happiness and comfort to hundreds of homes throughout the length and breadth of Wales." 

Too much praise cannot be given to the promoters of the Irish Booth for their successful 
efforts in raising and working for the second largest amount realized at the Fair. At enthusi- 
astic meetings presided over by Judge Kenefick at the Genesee Hotel, inaugurated their cam- 

The Soldiers' Comfort Booth supplied many soldiers and sailors with comforts and the war 
exhibit loaned by the Canadian Government was sent in charge of Captain Short, a Canadian 
soldier who had lost both legs in the early days of the war. 

May 24th, Canadian Special Day, had for its principal speaker Hon. R. B Bennett of Calgary. 

The American and all other booths were equally attractive and the proceeds realized therefrom, 
$160,000, attested to the weeks of hard work preceding the Bazaar and the faithful service of the 
men and women throughout the ten days of the exposition. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 



THE second Red Cross War Fund drive took place May 18 to May 27, 1918. The quota for 
Buffalo was $1,500,000 and the result was so successful that this quota was over subscribed 
several days before the end of the time allotted. 
Preparations for this drive, under leadership of Robert W. Pomeroy, were commenced several 
weeks before the actual day of opening. Splendid publicity was given by the newspapers and 
the work of carrying on this big undertaking was organized down to the minutest detail. Mr. 
Pomeroy had as his associates representative men and women of the city of Buffalo whose 
energy, perseverance and tact made the great success of this drive. The vice-presidents were: 
Nisbet Grammer, Morris Tremaine and Henry P. Werner. Members of the Advisory Committee 

J. W. CovvpER, Chairman J. C. Dann E. B. Holmes 


Richard L. Ball J. F. Schoellkopf, Jr. H. F. Russell 

C. L. Couch R. H. Thompson J. N. Mandeville 

Mrs. R. H. Thompson, Chairman 

Team Captain 

NO. 1 — Mrs. F. B. Baird 

NO. 2 — Mrs. L. E. Bartlett 

NO. 3 — Mrs. E. H. Butler 

NO. 4 — Mrs. S. M. Clement 

NO. 5 — Mrs. .Jacob Dold 

NO. 6 — Mrs. A. J. Elias 

NO. 7 — Mrs. H. A. Forman 

Team Captain Team 

No. 8— Mrs. C. L. Gurney No. 14 — Mrs. 

No. 9— Mrs. Clark L. Ingham No. 15 — Mrs. 

No. 10— Mrs. John Larkin, Jr. No. 16 — Mrs. 

No. 11— Mrs. W. A. Morgan No. 17 — Mrs. 

No. 12— Mrs. F. S. McGraw No. 18— Mrs. 

No. 13 — Mrs. Wm. P. Northrup No. 19 — Mrs. 


Theo. W. Pomeroy 
H. T. Ramsdell 


Arnold Watson 
C. R. Wyckoff 
Harry Yates 

A Living Red Cross of Buffalo School Girls 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 


F. B. Baird 

Team Captain 

No. 1 — Perry E. Wurst 

No. 2 — W. H. Kennedy 

No. 3 — Wm. Lansill 

No. 4 — Dr. Chas. R. Borzilleri 

No. 5 — Chas. R. Robinson 

No. 6 — James L. Crane 

No. 7 — C. L. GURNEY 

No. 8— John W. Schoen 
No. 9 — Dudley M. Irwin 
No. 10 — Philip J. Wickser 
No. 11— F. W. FiSKE, Jr. 
No. 12 — Wm. a. Douglas 
No. 13— R. L. Wood 
No. 14 — Dr. C. H. Andrews 
No. 15 — Wm. R. Huntley 


C. H. McCullough 
F. C. Kantrowitz 

Team Captain 

No. 16 — Max Lubelski 
No. 17 — Dr. E. L. Volgenau 
No. 18 — J. E. Mueller 
No. 19 — John K. Walker 
No. 20— H. T. Burns 
No. 21 — Dr. Earl P. Lothrop 
No. 22— P. G. Lapey 
No. 23 — R. J. Seidenberg 
No. 24 — Roland Crangle 
No. 25— J. F. Murray 
No. 26 — John T. Leader 
No. 27 — I. M. Mosher 
No. 28 — Ansley Sawy'ER 
No. 29— P. S. Millspaugh 

W. H. Andrews 
Frank Winch 

Team Captain 

No. 30 — Henry May 

No. 31— J. W. Van Allen 

No. 32 — John J. Poland 

No. 33— Robt. K. Root 

No. 34— S. J. Tucker 

No. 35 — C. W. Underwood 

No. 36— E. F. A. Kurtz 

No. 37 — Martin L. Kratz 

No. 38— W. H. Gratwick 

No. 39— W. H. Joyce 

No. 40— Frank W. Tracy 

No. 41— D. J. Sweeney 

No. 42— Geo. E. Smith 

No. 43 — H. Ernest Montgomery 

ERIE county- 

Akron , . 
Angola .... 
Arcade .... 
Athol Springs 

Clarence Center 
Colden . 
Collins . 
Collins Center 
Cowlesville , 
Depew . 
Derby . 
East Amherst 
East Aurora 
Elma . 
Grand Island . 
Griffins Mills 
Holland . . 


Victor Boyd 

J. L. Miller 

Arthur Suor 

Rev. Father Keavin 

J. S. Smith 

G. Rupert Lesch 

George W. Jack 

Henry W. Baker 

Bert Longmate 

C. W. Hillman 

Mrs. a. O. Hahl 

Ansley Zurbrick 

Rev. William T. Dunstan 

G. P. Harris 

Rev. Chas. Carpenter 

George W^illard 

R. I. Dickinson 

Elwin B. Rowley 

Stuart R. Mann 

George Muegel 

Fay H. Ball 

Mrs. John C. Hubbell 

Elon Clark 

Thomas G. Walker 

William Krebs 

Anna De Glopper 

W. H. Smith 

Frederick Eaton 

Fred H. Ellsworth 

Edna Stainton 

Branch Captain 

Iroquois Mrs. J. Emory Fischer 

Java Frank Walker 

Java Center . Rev. E. J. McCaffrey 

Java Village Miss Mary Sheehe 

Kenmore E. E. Niday 

Lackawanna Dr. E. M. Tracy 

Lancaster C. K. Porter 

Lawtons CD. TiCE 

Marilla Mrs. Fremont Brown 

North Collins 
North Evans 
Orchard Park 
Sardinia . . 
Sloan . . 

South Wales 
Town Line 
Wales , . . 
Wales Center 
West Falls , 
West Seneca 

Otto H. Wende 

David Nelson 

W. J. Critoph 

T. E. Morgan 

Mrs. C. C. Adams 

Cory Casey 

Mrs. John Carr 

George Oelheiser 

Harry S. Gray 

H. O. Johnson 

Le Grand De Graff 

Charles F. King 

Mrs. Nellie R. Johnson 

P. G. Havens 

Dr. Wooster 

Dr. p. a. McCrae 

Mrs. M. W. Pleister 

G. L. Helfter 

Miss My^ers 

On Thursday, May 16th, a get-together dinner of the committees was held at the Lafayette 
Hotel. General Chairman Robert W. Pomeroy presided, and the speakers were L. P. Shumway 
of Washington, D. C, Lieutenant Bruce H. Richardson of Winnipeg, Canada, and Major D. M. 
Mathieson. The dinner was most successful and the speakers were enthusiastically received and 
many large subscriptions were taken in that evening. Chairman Pomeroy announced the fol- 
lowing heads of special committees: 

Publicity, Finley H. Greene; Speakers, Edward H. Letchworth; Lighting and Cards, James N. Mandeville; 
Transportation, Dai H. Lewis, and Mrs. Harry A. Spaulding; Women's Committee, Mrs. Richard H. Thompson; 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 173 

House to House Canvass, William G. Moncrieff; Industrial, H. P. Parrock: Schools and City Employees, Frank B. 
Baird; Special Subscriptions, Harry T. Ramsdell; Booths, Proctor Carr; Supplies, John H. Beckley; Dinners and 
Luncheons, Richard L. Ball; Parades, Gen. Samuel M. Welch and Seymour P. White; Features, A. B. Wright, and 
Accounting, Clifford Hubbell. 

On Friday evening. May 17th, a mass meeting was held at the Elmwood Music Hall. Presiding 
at this meeting was Supreme Court Justice Herbert P. Bissell. A stirring speech was made by 
Norman Somerville of Toronto, one of the most eloquent orators in the Dominion of Canada. 
During the week a Flying Squadron, under the direction of Dai H. Lewis, Secretary of the Auto- 
mobile Club, conducted an automobile canvass in the country towns in Erie County. Many 
well-known men took part in this out-of-town drive. Justice Bissell, who took a most effective 
part in this work, died early in the year 1919. 

On Saturday, May 18th, a great demonstration and parade was held to give the drive a splendid 
start. General Samuel M. Welch was Grand Marshal of the Parade and the following organi- 
zations took part: 

Grand Marshal and his aides; U. S. A. Sanitary troops, Lieutenant Colonel Thomas D. Woodson; Polish Legion, 
in command of Lieutenant Albryct; British and Canadian recruiting detachment, Lieutenant W. Mayne Lynton; 
Fourth Brigade, State Guard, Brigadier General Louis L. Babcock; Home Defense Corps, Colonel H. I. Sackett; 
G. A. R. Veterans; Spanish War Veterans; Buffalo Chapter American Red Cross; Mothers of Men in service; 
National League for Women's Service; Buffalo Community Chorus; Boy Scouts; Women's Benefit Association of 
the Maccabees; The Equestrian Club; Detail from the Buffalo Fire Department; Polish Union of America and 
Pohsh Falcons; Italian societies; Children from public, parochial, private and high schools; Newsboys; High 
School Cadet Corps. 

In the morning at Lafayette Square the Red Cross flag was raised to fly throughout the cam- 
paign, the exercises being under the direction of A. B. Wright. Mayor George S. Buck spoke pre- 
senting the flag to the Campaign Committee and General Chairman Robert W. Pomeroy made 
the speech of acceptance. 

Probably no demonstration ever moved Buffalo more than the marching of the twenty thousand 
men, women and children in this wonderful Red Cross parade of May 18, 1918. There were many 
special features in the parade, notably a living Red Cross composed of six hundred girls; this 
was probably the most beautiful and striking feature of the parade. The girls in the center form- 
ing the cross were dressed in red and those surrounding them as a square were in white, making 
a truly marvelous effect. A representation of Joan of Arc, numerous floats representing the 
salient features of the Red Cross work, were followed by the most impressive thing of the whole 
pageant, the marching of the mothers of the boys who were then in service. To see these splendid 
women taken from every class of the city marching with set determined faces, most of them carry- 
ing flags with one star, but many having two, three and some as many as five stars, and one, Mrs. 
Herman Doascher, with six stars, in the flag they so proudly bore, was probably the most deeply 
impressive feature of this mighty host. 

The next most stirring unit in the parade were the hundreds of women dressed in the simple 
Red Cross costume. These women represented the actual workers in Buffalo who had been giv- 
ing their time and labor to produce Buffalo's quota of bandages, surgical dressings and other 
necessary Red Cross requirements. 

The first real day of the drive was Monday May 21st, and nearly a quarter of a million 
was raised on that day. This was a splendid get-away, and from day to day, with deter- 
mination that the million and a half dollars would be more than subscribed, the workers 
with unceasing labor and effort gained, until May 23d, the million mark was in sight 
and was passed the next day and a total of $1,179,000 was reached. On May 26th, a new 
goal of $2,-500,000 was put forth and at the end of the drive it was found that this amount 
was practically achieved. 

The most satisfactory feature of this drive was the fact that the money was contributed by 
people of all classes. When it is considered that a large percentage came from the indus- 
trial plants that were organized under the direction of H. P. Parrock, it will be readily seen 

174 Buffalo s Part in the World War 

that this Red Cross drive appealed to the working man as well as to the business man and 

During the week of the drive, daily luncheons were held at the Ellicott Club and great enthusi- 
asm was manifest. Nothing ever stirred Buffalo so deeply as this drive for although the Liberty 
Loans were all over subscribed, the money given was for purchasing U. S. Government Bonds, 
while the money given here was contributed to the Greatest Mother in the World. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 175 


DORIS Kellogg, canteen worker, left Buffalo in March, 1918, and sailed for France late that 
month aboard the "Rochambeau." She was accompanied by two or three American girls 
from other cities. Her days in Paris waiting for a canteen assignment grew dreary as 
the red tape was unwound ; her original designation had been for motor repair work, but the 
call in France was for service in the hospitals and canteens, and for either of these tasks, the 
Buffalo girl tendered her services. 

Writing from Paris, under date of May 19th, 1918, Miss Kellogg told the interesting story of 
her work: 

"Still in Paris but with a real job at last. We are to go to a Red Cross canteen in the French War Zone, to work 
with the French soldiers. I think I had better not mention the name for fear of the censor, but I'll just say that 
we will be right in the thick of things and in one of the most beautiful spots of France — forests full of wild flowers 
and /raises du hois and a beautiful old historic chateau to revel in. We are only waiting for our papers which allow 
us to go into the War Zone. 

"Now we are working in the casualty department, Red Cross Headquarters, 4 Place de la Concorde. It is inter- 
esting, but gruesome, too. We file the inquiries of people who are trying to locate or have some news of men in the 
Army. All day yesterday I made out records of men 'Killed in action' — 'May 10th: Died of wounds received in 
action' — 'May 10th: Died of gas poisoning,' etc. And then we read letters from parents begging for help in finding 
their boy, and so on. It makes one realize something of the suffering going on in America now. 

"This morning Al and I went to high mass at Notre Dame. It was a magnificent service with a Cardinal who 
swept down the center aisle, attended by gorgeously-gowned priests and choir boys. As he passed along, the congre- 
gation kissed a wonderful sapphire ring which he wore. Then there was special music, with the most beautiful boy 
soprano I've ever heard. The organ fairly shook the walls and ceiling with its music which seemed to pour from 
every inch of the cathedral. It was thrilling. But one did miss the great stained-glass windows, which have been 
removed for fear of air raids. 

"We had dinner the other night with Mr. Bobbett of St. Paul. He has taken the most adorable apartment imagi- 
nable near the Faubourg St. Germain, up on the top floor of a beautiful old building and right under the eaves. It 
belongs to an artist and is furnished with rare and lovely antiques. After dinner we had scarcely seated ourselves 
in the library than a far-off wail of the siren was heard. Heavens! another beastly air raid. It takes no time for 
the Alert to resound throughout Paris, and we rushed to the windows to watch the fire engines, which carry the 
sirens, go by. This attack proved to be more or less of a fizzle, as the Gothas couldn't get through the barrage, so 
after about an hour the Paris church bells sounded 'Berlot' — all clear — and we 'beat it' for home through the pitch 
black streets. Paris is more romantic than ever in these war times. 

"We are all waiting breathlessly for the great German drive. When will it come, how far will they push on, if at 
all? Can they get to Calais? Will they take Amiens? Must Paris, too, be taken? You can imagine the tension. That 
is one of the things that impresses me as being so diff'erent here from at home — the tension before a drive. We all 
get ready for it, wonder about it, talk about it, and everyone seems to become grave and determined and grim. You 
see Paris is a much more serious place than ever before. All the frivolous people have left, nine hundred thousand 
of them, they say, and those who have remained mean business." 

"Paris, France, May 22, 1918. 

"It is very interesting in the casualty department. We file records of prisoners of war, wounded, killed, etc., and 
the insight we get into the hearts of the soldiers and their loved and loving ones ' back home ' is an experience to 
have had. It is about like having an office job in Washington, I imagine, only, of course, so much more interesting. 
My stars, but I was dead tired after work to-night! It is so hot and all, but the satisfied sense of having put in a 
long hard day of helpful work is more than enough to compensate. 

"As I sit here in my open window this evening, I hear the familiar buzz of the 'Defense of Paris' aeroplanes over 
my head. They are the most picturesque objects up there in the sky. Sometimes I imagine them huge birds, but at 
other times they seem like great ships sailing in the blue. After it gets dark, we see the funny, clumsy 'Saucisse' 
balloons which are sent up with cables attached to entrap enemy planes during the air raids. 

"How fast and thick our boys are coming over! Everyone I see who has just arrived brings tales of ships full of 
Sammies being poured into France. You know that now we are part of the American Army and subject to military 
law and orders. Are with the American Expeditionary Forces. It is great!" 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 

Buffalo Mothers March in Honor of Their Boys Who Were Fighting "Over There" 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 177 

"Paris, May 23. 
"Last night there was another attempted air raid on Paris by the Germans, but I guess they didn't get past the 
barrage. However, it was mighty exciting and about the noisiest one we have had since I've been here. Al and I 
were having a little supper of cheese and confiture before retiring, when we half heard, half sensed, way off in the 
distance, the siren. Could anything be more irritating? We were awfully sore and bored. So we calmly went on with 
our cheese and the sirens went on swelling. All would have been very pleasant had not the lights suddenly been 
turned off so that there was nothing for us to do but put on coats, take our searchlight and step over to the open 
window to enjoy the 'doings and fireworks.' Out boomed the defense guns, up in the sky shells burst like rockets, 
and faint white streaks from the searchlight swept through the night. As our eyes became accustomed to the dark 
we picked out two huge 'Saucisse' waiting and watching, and then after a bit the purring of our own planes way 
over head. It is really a wonderful thing, these night thrills. After a bit the guns quite near us began bursting forth, 
and we thought it was time to descend to the first floor. But you know it is awfully strange, how calm and tranquil 
one can feel in the midst of these raids, and, finally, you get so bored, and what's more, sleepy beyond control — 
and you say to your friends, 'Well, I have a feeling that they won't get over to-night, and I for one am going to 
retire. You might rather be killed by a bomb from a Gotha than to die of a cold or ennui.' So we decide to quit 
the cave, stumble back to our pitch black rooms and I rolled into bed. But Al stands firmly in the window, a little 
forlornly to be sure, and says to me a bit peevishly: 

" 'I don't see how you can go to bed now, when all this excitement is going on, I'm awfully thrilled.' 
"Well, thrilled or no — just as I am dropping off to sleep, and as the guns are booming their loudest, I vaguely 
hear Al fall heavily into her bed and no doubt she is asleep before she really touches the mattress." 

"Paris, May 3L 
"We eagerly follow the German drive, and everyone thinks and talks of nothing else. Yesterday 'le canon' was 
much in evidence, and last night we had an air raid which we watched from our window. All this is very war-like. 
But today we had a glimpse of the real thing. Al and I went out to the American Ambulance at Neuilly to see Mrs. 
Vanderbilt (W. K.i and asked her if she wouldn't give us some temporary work out there until our papers came. She 
is the head of that marvelous hospital as well as our canteen boss and is a wonder. She took Al and me all through 
the building, which is enormous — 1,200 beds — and we were weak-kneed at the suffering of all those poor boys. The 
hospital is jammed full with beds in all the halls and corridors, but I saw the most pathetic sight of all on one stair- 
case and landing, where a crowd of boys in dirty and torn khaki were sitting and lying, just off the ambulances and 
waiting for the nurses and doctors to attend to them. Their eyes were the saddest thing to see. 

"And tomorrow we are to report out there early to do any kind of work we are asked to — give drinks to the boys, 
cheer them up, make beds, etc." 

(The girls followed the drive by the increase in the wounded coming to the hospitals and by 
the refugees. Each day found both wounded and refugees coming from localities nearer to 
Paris — Editor.) 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 


Showing the Destruction by the Germans at Peronne in Picardy 

College destroyed by Germans 

St. John's Church a wreck 

Ruins of a residential section 

The Palace on the morning after 

Grand Place after shower of shells 

In the business quarter 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 179 


BUFFALO and Erie County men were scattered through virtually every army division and 
eveiy military unit which left America for overseas service, and every American training 
camp held its quota of Buffalo men. Buffalo's national guardsmen, for the most part, were 
members of the 27th Division. The balance were in the 55th Pioneer Infantry to be used for 
replacement purposes. 

All units of the Army and of the Navy, whether in American camps or overseas service, found 
plenty to do, but there fell to the National Army men from New York State and from Buffalo 
and Erie County a terrifically arduous task in the Argonne. 

A comparatively large number of Buffalo Selective Service men had gone overseas with the 
77th Division in April. Another, and perhaps larger, contingent followed in the latter part of May. 
This second detachment was assigned to the 78th Division, Buffalo men being particularly numer- 
ous in the 309th and 311th Infantry; the 307th, 308th, 309th Artillery; 303d Trench Mortar 
Battery and 303d Engineers of that Division. 

The artillery, apart from its officers, was made up entirely of Selective Service men, a very 
large number of whom were from the vicinity of Buffalo and Rochester. They comprised the 
153d Field Artillery Brigade, and were organized at Camp Dix, along with the other units of the 
78th Division. The infantry organization was completed during the winter of 1917-1918, but 
the artillery was formed in a hurry at the last minute. The Division left Camp Dix May 27th, 
nearly two months after the 77th had sailed. The 78th sailed from New York, aboard the Cedric, 
and were on the sea at the time the Marines stopped the Germans near Chateau Thierry. 

Of course, the artillery recruits had to have some training before they were sent across. It 
was said of them that they were so raw when they reported for duty that most of them, if ordered 
to open the gun breech would have removed the muzzle cover. 

The 78th Division, followed the ocean-going course of other American divisions, and was as- 
signed to a training camp for instructions behind the lines. The situation was tense when they 
arrived, and the demand of General Foch for more men was still pressing. The French and 
British, along their two great fronts had taken new heart as the news of the achievement of the 
Marines flashed along the lines. They were still weary, however, after four years, of struggle and 
hardship, and needed encouragement just at that period to hold them to their task. 

The artillery of the 78th Division was sent to Camp de Meucon to learn the eccentricities of 
the French Seventy-five. Most of them had their first look at that sort of a gun in the park at 
Meucon. Their training period lasted six weeks, but they did not then join the rest of their 
Division; instead, they were sent to the Toul sector, a quiet sector for front line training. The 
Nineteenth Division infantry took its place in that sector August 23d, and the TSth's artillery 
was sent into support. 

The Nineteenth was made up of guardsmen from Oklahoma and Texas, where they grow strong 
and tall, but neither the infantry nor the artillery had been under fire before and both "had 
their wind up," as the Britishers would say, on their first night in the line; the heavens over No 
Man's Land looked like a Paine's fireworks celebration to the Nineteenth as the flare from the veri- 
lights took on a pyrotechnic aspect. Resting the chin strap of their tin derbies on the front line was 
a new experience. They knew they had veteran Huns in front of them and green artillerymen be- 
hind them, and their officers say it was difficult to state offhand of which they stood in greater fear. 

For upward of two weeks, first in support of the Nineteenth Division and then the Ninetieth 
Division, the 78th's artillery kept its post. The Germans did most of the shooting, for the am- 
munition of the Allies was being moved up quietly for the St. Mihiel offensive. The artillery's 
nose was kept on the front line until Pershing was ready to move. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 




N June 1st Miss Kellogg went to the Vanderbilt Hospital in Paris. Her letters tell the story 
of the work performed by American girls in that splendid institution, and it is interestingly 

"My first day in a hospital has been an event. We arrived at the American Ambulance at about 9 A. M., and were 
put right to work. I spent all morning making innumerable beds, hundreds which had just been evacuated and 
were to be ready for the rush of wounded who are pouring in every day. I almost keeled over when I assisted at 
the dressing of a boy's arm which was too horrible to describe. I had to hold the arm, which after a few minutes 
became so heavy that I felt like screaming, and every time I moved it in the least, the poor boy would screw up 
in agony. The whole elbow joint was exposed and gangrene had set in so that the odor was frightful. Poor little kid! 
He is only nineteen. He was as plucky as could be, but anxious, and asked the doctor if he thought he would be 
good for active duty again — the doctor said no. He has a bad wound in the abdomen too. 

"As I left the hospital at about seven this evening, I asked one of the ambulance drivers if there were any more 
wounded coming in to-night and he said that they had just had word that there are two thousand up at La Chapelle 
now. That means to-morrow many more new faces. 

"As for the 'offensive,' the Germans still press in toward Paris, and every night we are wakened by the sirens and 
barrage against the enemy planes. But I care not a whoop for anything now but to help make those poor Sammies 
more comfortable. 

"You see Neuilly is used as the evacuation hospital for our men coming from the Front, and after they have been 
fixed up there they are sent South. So every day we clear out some and fill in with fresh wounded." 

"Paris, .June 3. 
' ' Our hospital is like a great surging sea, with every day a new wave of wounded boys coming in and the ones not 
too ill moving out. I call them 'The Heroes of Cantigny.' It is so queer to go into the wards each morning and see 
new faces looking up into yours, mostly always still dirty and bloody. 

Members of Smith College Canteen Unit Miss Rochester of I: 

ii'st (it I'rar trio. 

182 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

"We have a British 'Tommy' who is suffering agonies, and to-day I helped move him from his bed onto the stretcher 
to be taken up to the operating room. He screamed like a wild thing and kept looking up into my face so pleadingly. 
I kept stroking his forehead and talking to him, and then went with him through the corridors and up in the lift. 
I told the two French stretcher bearers that if they would be extra careful, I'd give them each two cigarettes, and I 
tell you they simply crawled. And then when the kid came down again (he is only a kid, 19 years old yesterday) 
I gave him some sweet chocolate. He ate it and then looked up and said in his weak hoarse way: 'Noice.' 

"What,' says I. 

"Again, 'Noice, Noice.' But this time I thought he must be dying and had just strength enough left to call to 
me 'Nurse.' So leaning way down close to him I said: 

"What do you want, son?' 

" ' Oi say hit's noice.' The chocolate was nice. 

"I'm helping out in three large wards as nurse's aide, taking temperatures, pulses, cleaning the rooms, making 
beds and helping feed the men." 

"P.ARIS, June 4. 

"Can it be true! The Allies have taken 10,000 prisoners to-day at Chateau Thierry. It is too wonderful and we 
hardly know what to do to let off the exuberance bubbling up inside us. It came as such a surprise. 

"You see we had had a long day at the hospital, and when we were putting on our coats in the dressing room, 
some white-haired lady proceeded to unburden the most disheartening tales she had just heard from someone that 
we were evacuating as many of our wounded as we possibly could, that we were getting no new ones, and that the 
Huns were coming right along to Paris. Well, we were too sick. All those hundreds of wounded men upstairs and 
still we had not been able to hold the Germans! We came on into Paris, and this was the first thing that greeted us: 

'"10,000 German Prisoners Taken To-day at Chateau Thierry!' 

"As I say, we almost exploded, and to celebrate, six of us marched over to Weber's on Rue Royal to have a peach 
melba for dessert. Now what will the morning paper have to say, and what if it weren't so after all?" 

"Paris, June 6. 

"Still the war goes on and every day more wounded pour into the hospital. Just as I left to-night the ambulances 
were lined up waiting to unload their 'blesses.' It is a horribly pitiful sight to see the men when they first come in, 
dirty, bloody, and so tired and shaken up from their long ride in ambulance train or auto. 

"Behold a grand transformation after one night with us! A good night's rest, then the next morning wounds 
dressed, a warm bath and shave and dose of insect powder and they look and feel like princes. It is the most 
heartening thing in the world to see them brace up like that." 

"Paris, June 8. 

"What a day! All day long, from 8 o'clock this morning till 8.30 to-night, I've washed, fed and 'aided' the gallant 
Marines who poured into the hospital like hail and still were pouring when I left. The corridors were lined with 
wounded on cots and stretchers, the verandas with blanket-wrapped, bandaged boys, the stairways blocked with 
khaki-clad, steel helmeted Sammies. The Marines have put up some marvelous fight! Now we are putting up tents 
on the roof verandas to shelter more of them. Plucky kids! I love them all. The dressings were terribly trying, 
particularly as the nurses had to do them because all the doctors were operating. 

They are coming in now with arms and legs off. but don't let me harrow you too much, for after all the hospital 
is really quite heavenly to the men — clean, good food and Beds. And surgical cases are not like medical cases, seldom 
fevers or vomiting, just dressings and pain which grows less every day. I took jam to my boys to-day and am going 
to take butter to-morrow. I shall never be able to thank my stars enough for having been able to get over here just 
when I did and for the way things have turned out. If you could half realize what it means to these Sammies to 
have American girls here to comfort and cheer them, you would be building special ships to send more and more 
overseas. Being here is a privilege for which I shall never cease to be grateful. 

"And to-day Mrs. Vanderbilt broke the news that our papers are here for Chantilly and we must leave Monday. 
She says she hates to have us go but the need for canteen workers is tremendous and it seems best to send us out. 
I weep to leave the hospital, but I know I shall love the canteen work too. To-morrow is our last day." 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 183 


Germany's purpose in the March offensive, was to divide the French from the British forces. 
- The May and June drives were aimed at Paris and were designed, by capture of the French 
capital, to crush the French spirit. The push toward Paris began on May 27th. Rapidly 
and steadily, with gi-eat loss to the French, the German line moved toward the River Marne. 
The American Third Division, fresh from trench training, was hurried to the Marne to help out 
the French, while the First Division remained in the Montdidier Sector. A number of drafted 
men from Buffalo were in the Third Division. Another, Leo Dombrowski, a Polish boy of 230 
Townsend Street, won distinction for Buffalo and for himself by gallant conduct at that time 
and in later engagements ; in fact, many Buffalo boys distinguished themselves in that campaign. 
Dombrowski, drafted in Buffalo on November 22, 1917, went with others to Camp Dix, N. J., 
and later to Camp Greene, N. C, where he was assigned to Company H, 7th Infantry, U. S. 
Regulars, a part of the Third Division. The Division left Camp Merritt for overseas early in 
April, arrived in Brest on the 16th, and went immediately into trench training. 

When the German Marne offensive was ripping the French lines wide open, Dombrowski and 
his Buffalo "bunkies" found themselves on their way to the Marne front south of Chateau 
Thierry to participate with their division in the first conspicuous American effort in France. 

Here was an instance of a youngster, unknown to war, taken from his work bench and, in the 
short space of six months placed against the trained soldiers of Germany in a telling battle of 
the greatest war of all history. 

The motorized machine gun battalion of the Third Division reached the bridgehead at the 
Marne on June 1st, opposite Chateau Thierry, and successfully held it against the German forces. 
It was the first check the enemy experienced in his Spring push toward the wonder city of France. 
These men had travelled fast to i-each the Marne bridgehead before the Germans. When they 
got there the withdrawing French told them they would be compelled to retreat. "Retreat Hell," 
they replied, "We've just arrived." 

The Second Division — made up of the Third Brigade, 9th Infantry, 23d Infantry and Fifth 
Machine Gun Battalion; Fourth Brigade, Fifth Marines, Sixth Marines and Sixth Machine Gun 
Battalion; the Second Artillery Brigade — 12th, 15th and 17th Field Artillery and the Fourth 
Machine Gun Battalion; also, the Second Regiment of Engineers and the 1st Field Signal Battal- 
ion — was in a training area when the Marne offensive began. This Division included, many 
Buffalo and Erie County* men, among them Lester Bergman, 18th Co., 5th Regiment, U. S. 
Marines. Private Bergman was wounded five times and spent five months in a hospital in France. 
He won the Croix de Guerre and was cited for the Distinguished Service Cross for the work he 
did while on patrol one night when his three companions in the patrol were killed and he managed 
to escape after having been rather seriously wounded. It was the original intention of the 
High Command to have the Second Division take up a position with the First Division at Mont- 
didier as soon as its training was complete. Both Divisions were to be held in reserve to check 
any further drive toward the Channel Ports. The Second Division had been training at Chaumont- 
en-Vixen, but by orders of the French High Command, to which General Pershing had turned 
over the American forces, the Second was directed, on May 29th, to march to the Beauvais area 

* Three Buffalo boys, privates in the Marine Corps, Frank J. Barcsylsowski, Lester Bergman, and George M. Ebel, Jr., played a prominent 
part in the Battle in Belleau Wood in France recently, having a hand in the capture of a Maxim gun, 23 machine guns and 170 Huns. The Maxim 
will be sent to the United States and will find a permanent place at Marine Headquarters in Washington. Along with it will come two of the 
heavy German "minenwerfers" which will be presented to the United States Military and Naval Academies at West Point and Annapolis, respec- 
tively. On this occasion. 23 German machine guns were also captured. All these were later turned up on the front line by the Americans and 
fired at the enemy, many of whom thus fell victims to their own weapons. Barcsyiiowski and Bergman have been cited for bravery. Barcsykowski 
and three others took a Hun machine gun after wiping out its crew through sniping. Bergman was one of a party of ten who captured the Ger- 
mans who were making a flank attack on the trench occupied by the Americans. Both of these young men enlisted in Buffalo in April, 1917, 
and after training in this countr.v went across the sea together. Barcsykowski's home is at 18 Klaus Street, that of Bergman 176 West Delavan 
Avenue and Ebel is the son of Mrs. Margaret Ebel, who lives at 408 Bristol Street.— From the New York Herald. 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 185 

about one day's trip north. That movement was scheduled to begin at 6 o'clock on the morn- 
ing of May 31st. Billeting parties had been sent ahead to provide quarters, and the Division 
was fully prepared to move at the appointed hour. 

In the meantime the news of the German offensive of May 27th was flying around the world. 
Military forces had received the information that the Germans had smashed through the French 
line between Soissons and Rheims and were advancing rapidly on Paris. The American First 
Division had broken the continuity of German successes by capturing Cantigny* in a local combat, 
but the German drive had met no insuperable obstacle. 

About 5 o'clock on the evening of May 30th, a French staff officer appeared withdrawing 
orders for the movement to Beauvais. He delivered a new order directing the infantry to be 
ready at 5 o'clock the following morning to proceed to the neighborhood of Meaux on the Chateau 
Thierry front. The trip was one of about 70 miles from Chaumont-en- Vixen and was to be taken 
in motor trucks. The trucks of the supply and ammunition trains followed the infantry. The 
other units were directed to proceed by train as rapidly as transportation could be provided. 
Meaux is located on the Paris road about 20 miles east of Paris. When the infantry arrived, 
the city was in a state of great excitement. The streets were filled with refugees. Marines said 
every living thing they saw was going in the opposite direction as they moved up to the front. f 
Refugees hunying with their worldly goods along the road stopped, knelt and prayed as the 
American soldiers passed them. Old men and old women and children loaded down with bundles, 
some carrying the sick, and all haggard and worn and pitiful, trudged on down the road as rapidly 
as their feeble legs could carry them. A number of the Buffalo marines, after their return, said 
the sight of those oppressed people gave them a determination to stop the Germans at all hazard. 

When General Bundy, commanding the 2d Division arrived at Meaux he was directed to take 
up a position between Gandelu and Montigny northwest of Chateau Thierry. At that time 
General Bundy had no information as to the location of the French or the Germans, possibly 
because the line was changing so rapidly. The French High Command had no definite knowledge 

On June 1st General Bundy left his temporary headquarters, at Montreuil in the Gandelu 
area, and went to meet General Degoutte commanding the French 21st Army Corps. They met 
a short distance west of Chateau Thierry. General Degoutte's corps had fought against superior 
numbers for five days, and had conducted an orderly retreat saving most of their artillery and 
transports. At the time of the conference between the American and the French Commanders, 
it was explained to Bundy that the Germans had taken Chateau Thierry and Hill 204. Don 
Martin, the former Buffalo newspaper man, was in Chateau Thierry the day the Germans entered. 

Although General Degoutte had made no mention of the fact, it appears, that the Germans 
had also taken Vaux and were in full command of the Paris Road. Their first line ran through 
Vaux and along a railroad to Bouresches, thence through the Belleau Wood to Chezy, passing 
through Torcy. The American brigades of the Second Division established their brigade head- 
quarters on the east and west side of the Paris Road a few miles west of Vaux. Some of the trains 

* On April 26th the First Division had gone into the line in the Montdidier salient on the Picardy battle front. Tactics had been suddenly 
revolutionized to those of open warfare, and our men, confident of the results of their training, were eager for the test. On the morning of May 
28th. this division attacked the commanding German position in its front, taking with splendid dash the town of Cantigny and all other objec- 
tives, which were organized and held steadfastly against vicious counter attacks and galling artillery fire. Although local, this brilliant action 
had an electrical effect, as it demonstrated our fighting qualities under extreme battle conditions, and also that the enemy's troops were not alto- 
gether invincible. — From General Pershing's Report. 

On .\pril 20th, the 26th Division had successfully attacked the Germans at Seicheprey. The attack occurred during the 26th's period of train- 
ing, and was considered by many officers as the most important of the local combats in which the Americans had taken part up to that time. 

— Editor. 

T It was on the evening of May 30th, after a day dedicated to the memory of their comrades who had fallen in the training days and in the 
Verdun sector, that the Fifth and Sixth Regiments and the Sixth Machine Gun Battalion, United States Marines, each received the following 

.\dvance information, official, received, that this regiment will move at 10 P. M., 30th May, by bus to new area. All trains shall be loaded at 
once and arrangements hastened. Wagons, when loaded, will move to Serans to form train. 

.\11 through the night there was feveristi activity among the Marines. Then, the next morning, the long trains of camions, buses, and trucks, 
each carrying its full complement of United States Marines, went forward on a road which at one place wound within less than ten miles of Paris, 
toward Meaux and the fighting line. 

Through the town of Meaux went the long line of camions and to the village of Montreuil-aux-Lions, less than four miles from the rapidly ad- 
vancing German line. Refugees, old men and women, small children, riding on every conceivable conveyance, many trudging along the side of 
the road driving a cow or calf before them, all of them covered with the white dust which the camion caravan was whirling up as it rolled along: 
along that road only one organization was advancing, the IJnited States Marines- — Secretary Daniels' Report, December 1, I91S. 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 

German Entrenchments on Battlefield North of Soissons 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 187 

which were to bring a part of the Division were cancelled, and the units assigned to those trains 
started on a forced march of 70 miles; among the marchers were most of the machine gun units, 
and motor trucks were later sent to hurry them in. 

The spirit of the French was revived when they heard that the Americans "in large numbers" 
had entered the line. A gap in the front between Gandelu and Montigny held by the French 
Seventh Corps was filled by the 23d Infantry and a battalion of Marines under Colonel Paul B. 
Malone. A part of the Third Division went into the line south of the Marne near Chateau Thierry. 
When the oncoming Prussians struck this new formation the entire American front held.* The 
German drive was stayed. 

The Germans, from Hill 204 which they occupied, had a splendid view of the American forces 
and positions. They also had control of the air, and, in general, every advantage of location. 
While the Germans had been checked, the American situation was not an enviable one. 

Having successfully held, the Americans quickly decided that the time had arrived for their 
offensive, and on June 6th, the Marines began the attack on Belleau Wood and Bouresches. 
This move was made in conjunction with the 164th French Division on the left. Belleau Wood 
is about a mile and a half in length from north to south with an average width of less than one 
mile. It was covered at that time with a thick undergrowth. The Germans had not been un- 
mindful of its advantages for concealing machine guns and infantry and they had occupied it 
with both, together with some trench mortar batteries. The woods had the protection of the 
German artillery, and were a menace to the American position, for, if driven off the Paris Road, 
the American line of supplies would be wiped out and the troops forced to fight with their backs 
to the Marne. 

The Marines went into Belleau Woodf at 5 P. M. on June 6th, and when night fell they had 
taken Bouresches and a goodly portion of the woods. Their losses were heavy, but they held 
their position in the face of fierce counter-attacks. It had been difficult for the Germans to believe 
that their advance had been stopped ; now it was bitterly aggravating to them to find themselves 
being pushed back and they fought desperately. Their morale was at high pitch then. 

James Doyle, a Buffalo Marine, a former street car conductor, who was in the Marine regiment 
that met the Germans in the wheat field, himself wounded in Belleau Wood, said on his return: 
"They were the sorest mob of Prussians I ever saw when they were forced to go back. We had 
hung them on the wires by the hundreds for they came at us the first time in massed formation." 

Private Turner, connected with the Buffalo Marine Recruiting Station, fought through Belleau 
Wood. He left here some days before the declaration of war for Quantico, Virginia, a marine 
training station. Most of the Marines who left Buffalo prior to and at that time, as well as those 
who left subsequently, were sent to Paris Island for preliminary training; they were then trans- 
ferred to Quantico, and from the latter place to France. Among the Marines the trip was called 
a "hop, step and a jump." The hop was to Paris Island, the step to Quantico and the jump to 

* On the evening of June 2d the first fieldmessage from the Fourth Brigade to Major General Omar Bundy, Commanding the Second Division, 
went forward: 

Second Battalion, Sixth Marines, in line from Le Thiolet through Clarembauts Woods to Triangle to Lucy. Instructed to hold line. First 
Battalion, Sixth Marines, going into line from Lucy through Hill 142. Third Battalion in support at La Voie du Chatel, which is also the post 
command of the Sixth Marines. Sixth Machine-gun battalion distributed at line. 

Meanwhile the Fifth Regiment was moving into line, machine guns were advancing, and the artillery taking its position. That night the men 
and officers of the Marines slept in the open, many of them in a field that was green with unharvested wheat, awaiting the time when they should 
be summoned to battle. 

The advance of the Germans was across a wheat field, driving at Hill 165 and advancing in smooth columns. The United States Marines, 
trained to keen observation upon the rifle range, nearly every one of them wearing a marksman's medal or better, that of the sharpshooter or 
expert rifleman, did not wait for those gray-clad hordes to advance nearer. Calmly they set their sights and aimed with the same precision that 
they had shown upon the rifle ranges at Paris Island, Mare Island and Quantico. Incessantly their rifles cracked, and with their fire came the 
support of the artillery. The machine-gun fire, incessant also, began to make its inroads upon the advancing forces. Closer and closer the shrapnel 
burst to its targets. Caught in a seething wave of machine-gun fire, of scattering shrapnel, of accurate rifle fire, the Germans found themselves 
in a position in which further advance could only mean absolute suicide. The lines hesitated. They stopped. They broke for cover, while the 
Marines raked the woods and ravines in which they had taken refuge with machine gun and rifle to prevent them making another attempt to 
advance by infiltrating through. Above, a French airplane was checking up on the artillery fire. Surprised by the fact that men should deliber- 
ately set their sights, adjust their range, and then fire deliberately at an advancing foe, each man picking his target, instead of firing merely in 
the direction of the enemy, the aviator signaled below "Bravo!" — Secrtlary Daniels' Report, December 1, 191S. 

t In theblack recesses of Belleau Wood the Germans had established nest after nest of machine guns. There in the jungle of matted under- 
brush, of vines, of heavy foliage, they had placed themselves in positions they believed impregnable. And this meant that unless they could be 
routed, unless they could be thrown back, the breaking of the attack of June 2d would mean nothing. There would come another drive and 
another. The battle of Chateau Thierry was, therefore, not won and could not be won until Belleau Wood had been cleared of the enemy. 

It was June 6th that the attack of the American troops began against that wood and its adjacent surroundings, with the wood itself and the 

iContinued on page 1S9) 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 189 

The Fifth and Sixth Marine Regiments left America June 13, 1917 on the *' Henderson/' and 
arrived at St. Nazaire, France, on June 26. On April 20, 1918 some of the Marines, among 
them Turner, were injui^d with shrapnel at Verdun, but most of them had returned to the line 
by May 30, when the trip from Chaumont-en-Vixen to Meaux was started. His battalion arrived 
in position at Chateau Thierry on June 5, and on the following day was in the thick of the 
fight in the fields and ploughed ground adjacent to Belleau Wood. 

The Marines lost hundreds of their men in Belleau Wood. The machine gun nests and the high 
explosive shells, the gas and the shrapnel took a mighty toll. But the Marines hung on, and on 
June 11th they tore in again. In their second assault they took another portion of the Wood, 
but it was not all theirs as yet. Fritz rushed in fresh troops, and subjected the Americans to a 
terrific shell fire of gas and shrapnel. On the 13th the Germans launched a counter-attack. But 
the Marines, their lines thin but unshakable, held fast, relied on their bayonets, and beat off the 
onslaught with the cold steel. 

It so happened that the 7th Infantry, a part of the Third Division, was in I'eserve behind the 
Marines on June 13th when the depleted ranks successfully withstood the German counter-stroke. 
General Bundy made application for the use of the 7th Infantry for six days. The request was 
granted, and the 7th Regiment of the Third Division took the place of two battalions of Marines. 
The Marine Battalions, reduced one-half in numbers, were withdrawn to billets on the Marne 
for replacements and a rest. 

General Bundy in his report says: *'The presence of the 7th Infantry was of great value. The 
battalion south of Torcy advanced its position to within a short distance of the village, thus 
straightening out a re-entrant that existed in our lines at that point. The other two battalions 
fought gallantly, but unsuccessfully, to gain the northern edge of Belleau Wood. They encoun- 
tered the same opposition that had held the Marines, and when they were relieved at the end of 
six days the northern part of the woods was still in possession of the Germans.'' 

It is interesting to note that Corporal Dombrowski, the drafted Buff'alo boy, was a member 
of the 7th Infantry and thus took part in the battle of Belleau Wood. In a letter to friends, he 

towns i>f Torcy and Bouresches forming the objectives. At 5 o'clock the attack came, and there began the tremendous sacrifices which the Marine 
Corps gladly suffered that the German fighters might be thrown back. 

In Belleau Wood the fighting had been literally from tree to tree, stronghold to stronghold. Belleau Wood was a jungle, its every rocky forma- 
tion forming a German machine-gun nest, almost impossible to reach by artillery or grenade tire. There was only one way to wipe out these 
nests — by the bayonet. And by this method were they wiped out, for United States Marines, bare chested, shouting their battle cry of E-e-e-e-e- 
y-a-a-h-h-h yip! " charged straight into the murderous fire from those guns, and won! Out of the number that charged, in more than one instance, 
only one would reach the stronghold. There, with his bayonet as his only weapon, he would either kill or capture the defenders of the nest, and 
then swinging the gun about in its position, turn it against the remaining German positions in the forest. Such was the character of the fighting 
in Belleau Wood; fighting which continued until July 6th, when after a short relief the invincible Americans finally were taken back to the rest 
billet for recuperation. 

In all the history of the Marine Corps there is no such battle as that one in Belleau Wood. Fighting day and night without relief, without 
sleep, often without water, and for days without hot rations, the Marines met and defeated the best divisions that Germany could throw into 
the line. The heroism and doggedness of that battle are unparalleled. Time after time officers seeing their lines cut to pieces, seeing their men 
so dog tired that they even fell asleep under shell fire, hearing their wounded calling for the water that they were unable to supply, seeing men 
fight on after they had been wounded and until they dropped unconscious: time after time officers seeing these things, believing that the very limit 
of human endurance had been reached, would send back messages to their post command that their men were exhausted. But in answer to this 
would come the word that the lines must hold, and if possible those lines must attack. And the lines obeyed. Without water, without food, 
without rest they went forward — and forward every time to victory. Companies had been so torn and lacerated by losses that they were hardly 
platoons: but they held their lines and advanced them. In more than one case companies lost every officer, leaving a sergeant, and sometimes a 
corporal to command, and the advance continued. After thirteen days in this inferno of fire a captured German officer told with his dying breath 
of a fresh division of Germans that was about to be thrown into the battle to attempt to wrest from the Marines that part of the wood they had 
gained. The Marines, who for days had been fighting only on their sheer nerve, who had been worn out from nights of sleeplessness, from lack 
of rations, from terrific shell and machine-gun fire, straightened their lines and prepared for the attack. It came — as the dying German officer 
had predicted. 

At 2 o'clock on the morning of June 13th it was launched by the Germans along the whole front. With their backs to the trees and boulders 
of the Bois de Belleau, with their sole shelter the scattered ruins of Bouresches, the thinning lines of the Marines repelled the attack and crashed 
back the new division which had sought to wrest the position from them. 

And so it went. Day after day, night after night, while time after time messages like the following traveled to the Post command: 

Losses heavy. Difficult to get runners through. Some have never returned. Morale excellent, hut troops about all in Men exhausted. 

And they continued to hold on in spite of every difficulty. Advancing their lines slowly day by day, the Marines, finally, prepared their posi- 
tions to such an extent that the last rush for the possession of the wood could be made. Then, on June 24th, following a tremendous barrage, 
the struggle began. 

The barrage literally tore the woods to pieces, but even its immensity could not wipe out all the nests that remained: the emplacements that 
were behind almost every clump of bushes, every jagged, rough group of boulders. But those that remained were wiped out by the American 
method of the rush and the bayonet, and in the days that followed every foot of Belleau Wood was cleared of the enemy and held by the frayed 
lines of the Americans. 

It was. therefore, with the feeling of work well done that the depleted lines of the Marines were relieved in July, that they might be filled 
with replacements and made ready for the grand offensive in the vicinity of Soissons, July 18th. And in recognition of their sacrifice, and bravery 
this praise was forthcoming from the French: 

"Army Headquarters. June 30, 1918. 

"In view of the brilliant conduct of the Fourth Brigade of the Second United States Division, which in a spirited fight took Bouresches and 
the important strong point of Bois de Belleau, stubbornly defended by a large enemy force, the general commanding the Sixth Army orders that 
henceforth, in all official papers, the Bois de Belleau shall be named "Bois de la Brigade de Marine. 

"Division CJeneral Degoutte, Commanding Sixth Army." 
— Fnnn Secretary Daniels' Report, December 1, 1918. 



Buffalo's Part in the World War 


American Marines in France 

Burying their first German dead 

In the front line trenches on Western Front 

U. S. Marine on sentry duty during a gas attack 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 191 

"Early in June we were sent to relieve the Marines in Belleau Wood, proceeding right up to 
the front line. My platoon went into the front line the first night we arrived. The whole regiment 
occupied both the front and support lines. Two platoons would take the front line each night 
and two fall back, alternating in this way nightly. The front line here consisted of dug-outs only. 
There were no trenches. These dug-outs were called fox holes or funk holes. The morning follow- 
ing the night we entered the front line we were told to go over at 7.45 A. M. We understood the 
barrage was to start at 5.30 A. M. No barrage came and we sent back runners to find out what 
was the trouble. Some of the runners were ' bumped off, ' but finally one got through and on his 
return gave us the news that the artillery had no orders for a barrage. We later found out that 
this attack was not ordered by our own command but was ordered by a spy with the rank of 
lieutenant colonel in the Marines. We started over, however, without the barrage, but failed in 
our effort, and had to fall back to our front line. Company D was practically wiped out of exist- 
ence in this attack. We held the line until relieved by the Marines. " 

Whether or not Corporal Dombrowski's reference to the spy is accurate must depend for verifi- 
cation upon the complete data which will come with the lapse of time. The official reports of 
that period convey no confirmation, but numerous accounts of the activities of spies in French 
and American uniforms have come back with the returning soldiers, and not all of these narra- 
tives can be entirely, nor readily, dismissed. 

The Marines returned to the line at the end of six days, and favored by a well placed and 
terrific barrage they drove the Germans from the woods and sent them flying across the open 
ground toward the railroad tracks north. Belleau Wood had been won! 

The moral effect of this victory was immense; not only among the Allied fighting men but in 
the French and English homes and in the American homes far across the ocean. The praise of 
the Marines was sung at every fireside and on every street corner in Buffalo when the news 
finally got through. 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 


WHILE the Marines with the Second Division were pressing north through Belleau Wood, 
and it became apparent that American courage and driving power was taxing the military 
skill of the enemy, a very extended movement of the American troops on the Continent 
began. Five of the ten divisions then training in the British area were withdrawn. Among these 
was the 77th Division which, during the month of May and early in June, had been within ear- 
shot of the heavy artillery duel at Ypres and Mount Kemmel. They were subjected nightly to 
Boche bombing raids, and had suffered some casualties. The Buffalo boys had absorbed British 
combat methods but balked at British "chow. " .Jam and tea and lime juice, with meat for dinner 
and cheese for supper day in and day out was not entirely to their liking. Later on, when they 
were battling through the Argonne it would have looked like a banquet. 

The 42d Division had held a front line trench 
at Baccarat in the Lori-aine Sector for some 
weeks. And they held it well. It was a quiet 
sector, apparently by mutual consent, but in a 
quiet sector the raiding parties, the night prowl- 
ers, always establish for one side or the other a 
conviction of superiority. It is related of the 
42d Division that during their period on the 
Lorraine front they "held the edge" to such an 
extent that the American doughboys were able 
to "hang their wash on the barbed wire en- 
tanglements" in No-Man's Land.* That may 
not be entirely accurate, but it serves to in- 
dicate that the 42d Division was not playing 
the subordinate part in No-Man's Land in 
Lorraine. When the 77th Division was with- 
drawn from its training area, it was sent to the 
Lorraine front to relieve the 42d Division. The 
42d had suffered some casualties and those places 
were filled with men from the 77th Division. 

On June 19th the change was begun and by 
the 26th the new Division had moved into 
place. The Rainbow Division was gone, and 
the 77th had established the historic fact of 
being the first draft division to take over a part 
An Abandoned German Machine Gun of the front line. The Rainbow Division pulled 

out, and went into reserve, presently to take up a position east of Rheims. 

Apparently the Germans had knowledge of the lack of ti-aining in the new division. If the 42d 
Division had been masters of No-Man's Land in the Baccarat sector, the Boche apparently saw 
no immediate necessity of having the dose repeated with the newcomers. They welcomed the 
77th at 4.00 A. M. on the 24th of .June with a shower of gas, mixing phosgene and mustard with 
fine discrimination, showing a special favoritism for the densely billeted villages of Migneville, 

* Yesterday in broad daylight some Alabama troops on our right walked over to the German trenches unmolested and unchallenged. They 
found a German officer and three men in a dugout. The Alabama party was only five. They killed all tour Germans and upon their return found 
one of their own party missing. They went back and found him caught, in the German wire. While rescuing him they heard footsteps on the Ger- 
man duckboard. Lying in wait thev caught two other Boche. killed them and stripped all of their victims bringing their clothes back. Their only 
worry was the dirty socks of the last Hun they caught. The .\labama crowd are the greatest crowd I have ever seen. They wander all over the 
landscape shooting at everything. — From a letter icrillen by Major William J. Donovan, 165th Regiment {iZd Division), to his wife, March 10, 1918. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 


St. Maurice, Neuviller and Badonviller. The 
front line was not overlooked. If the 77th had 
anticipated a quiet time in that quiet sector they 
got over the notion quickly. Their housewarm- 
ing party was not entirely of the sort they would 
have chosen if the matter had been left to them, 
but yet they made no grumble. They were new 
at the war business and not disposed to be 
critical about front line ethics. They put their 
gas masks on with great speed and thereby 
saved themselves much inconvenience and 
suffering and many casualties. 

The Baccarat sector, a portion of which was 
held by French troops, was between Luneville 
and St. Die, southwest of Nancy. The 77th 
was given the portion of the front extending 
from Herbeviller on the left to a point east of 
Badonviller on the right. This territory was 
divided into four sub-sections which were held 
by the 305th, 306th, 307th, 308th Infantry 
respectively; a battalion front of each sub- 
division with a battalion in reserve. Each week 
or so, the battalions would alternate in the front 
line. The 77th remained in Baccarat sector from 
June 26th to August 4th. About the middle of 
July when the drive was started at Soissons to 
break through the Marne salient, the nose of 
which the Marines and Regulars had turned up 
at Belleau Wood, the French Division, the 61st, 
which had shared the Baccarat sector with the 77th was withdrawn, leaving the Mew York 
drafted men in charge of the entire front. The New York artillery came into support, and the 
Baccarat zone had then become for the first time in the war an all-American affair, with nearly 
2,000 Buffalo and Erie County boys doing their bit there. 

Watching the Enemy from an Old .Stone Outhouse 

194 Buffalo's Part in the World War 


WHILE troop movement from the United States during April, May and June was gratifying 
to the Allied commanders it had the effect of intensifying the German attack. The Marines 
had taken Belleau Wood, but the grey hordes released from the Russian front rolled down 
toward the Marne. 

The Allies were still fighting a defensive war. General Pershing in his conferences with General 
Foch, according to the best attainable information, urged an offensive operation on the Marne 
salient — the wedge which had been driven down to Chateau Thierry, its sides extending to a 
point just west of Rheims on the east and Soissons on the West. Major Frederick Palmer, war 
coiTespondent and censor on General Pershing's staff, in commenting on this situation said: 

" The Allied armies on the western front had been almost as completely on the defensive for 
four months as if we were a besieged garrison. In spirit they had been on the defensive since 
Cambrai in the previous autumn. After the fourth offensive, which brought the enemy within 
forty miles of Paris, you might hear military discussions on whether or not Paris should be de- 
fended in the event of another German drive bringing it under the German guns. The preparations 
which the military authorities had made for any emergency were matters of common talk. We 
were ready to move our own army offices from Paris; the Red Cross and the Y. M. C. A. had 
arranged for trucks to remove their workers. Lay pessimists saw Paris as already lost ; and mili- 
tary pessimists saw its defenses as impracticable directly it was seriously threatened. All hopes 
centered on the arrixang American divisions. If the Allies could stem the tide until August 1 then 
we should outnumber the enemy; and when there were enough Americans and they were oi-ganized 
we might consider an offensive which could hardly take place before Spring. Thus, confidence in 
eventual victory rested entirely upon the Americans; and the spirit of initiative in our men was 
reflected in counsel by General Pershing which was to have an important influence on the opera- 
tions that were to recover the offensive for the Allies in a single stroke. 

"Any soldier of any age who looked at the German salient after the Marne offensive could 
have had only one thought, and that was a drive at the base of the salient to close the mouth of 
the pocket. Yet one heard talk that salients no longer counted. Neither reports of German 
strength nor the defensive spirit of the time diverted General Pei-shing's attention from that 
inviting bulge in the German battle line. When Premier Clemenceau and General Foch came 
to American Headquarters June 22 for a conference, he again pointed to its obvious vulnerability, 
and vigorously advocated an offensive. He had faith that the German strength was overestimated ; 
and that under a determined attack the salient would crack like an egg shell. 

"But where were the troops for the operation? The events of the four years of war, which 
had placed such heavy responsibilities upon the French Army, had made the French thrifty of 
their man power. Although no sufficient strategic reserve for a counter offensive existed. General 
Pershing suggested that there were divisions in rest which could be mobilized. Our untrained 
divisions could release other French divisions from quiet .sectors. Our older divisions had already 
proved their mettle. We had others which might not be fully trained, but they would fight. 
They knew how to shoot; they had initiative. Behind them were still other American divisions 
rapidly training and others arriving from America. The time had come to prick the bubble of 
the Marne salient. It was only a bubble, though it was German. Let the veteran French Army 
attack with its old elan and the young American Army attack by its side with the energy of its 
youth, and we should force the Germans to dance to our tune instead of our dancing to their 

Just at that time Major William J. Donovan, Buffalo, was in the line with a portion of the 
42d Division east of Rheims. General Pershing in his report said, "they held ground unflinch- 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 195 

ingly." Lieutenant Wertz, the old 74th boy, was in the First Division on the Soissons front, 
and the Second division, with a big contingent of Buffalo boys, was then moving into position 
beside the First , on the western side of the Marne Salient. If a fight was to come off there, Buffalo 
would be in it. They did not have to wait long. 

The Germans launched an attack on July 15th with a view to crossing the Marne east of Chateau 
Thierry. This was the offensive they expected would carry them to Paris. The German drive 
was teiTific. One regiment of the Third Division * alone held its positions — the Thirtieth Infantry. 

The French Division which had been holding the ground on the right retired under fire, and 
the 38th Infantry on the left of the Thirtieth also fell back. Colonel Butts of the 30th, who at 
that period in the German advance, when told by the French to fall back, sent word that the 
.American soldiers would not be able to understand why their flag should be carried to the rear; 
that he proposed to hold his position. 

Colonel Butts estimated that 10,000 German soldiers were killed in that battle. Upon his 
return to a rest billet a few days afterwards he dictated the following: 

"On July 15th the 30th Infantry held the sector from Mezy nearly to Fossoy and covered more than four kilo- 
meters of front, and five or six kilometers back from the river (Marne). The front was hghtly held. The ground 
was open for a mile back from the river and then it was interspersed with woods. The reserves were in the Bois 
d'Agremont and near the front line of the woods was the P. C. post. The ground rose gradually from the river and 
a moving picture artist could not have selected a spot where there was such an ideal view of a battlefield; but a 
view meant practical annihilation, so that the reserves suffered more than the men in front. For hours there was 
nothing to do but lie close in trenches with gas masks on. 

"The main attack was directed against the 30th Infantry, which received the greatest percentage of the artillery 
fire in the 3rd Division. 

"In the first ten seconds every wire was cut by shellfire, every horse was killed, every rolling kitchen and water 
cart was destroyed, every trail obliterated, and four of the five runners were killed. Three German divisions were 
opposite the 3d Division and the attack was mostly on the sector held by the 30th ; they received at least one-half 
of it. 

"The French division on the right of the 30th and 38th retired under fire until the Boches were across the Marne 
and had put artillery on the hills south of .Jaulgonne. This forced the 38th to back up, and that left the 30th being 
shelled from three sides. The reserve line and P. C. post were for a day on the advance line of the 7th Infantry on 
the left and the 38th Infantry on the right. This left the 30th shelled on three sides for twenty-four hours. Orders 
captured on a German officer showed they expected to have been at St. Eugene at 7 A. M. and at Montmirail, six 
miles to the rear of the 30th, that night. 

"Officers and men, crazed from shell shock, would rush to the P. C. post to cry that all was lost, and that it was 
hell and they could not stand it any longer. But all of them did! It was a wonderful lot of officers and men and I 
am proud to have commanded them. Believe me, they can fight! Any tale can be told of them and it can be more 
than true. Recite any tale of heroism and sacrifice and it has already been duplicated." 

Major Palmer speaking of this German drive on the Marne says: 

"The result of the German offensive of July 15 justified General Pershing's premises and con- 
clusions both in the repulse of the enemy and in the way which the 3d and 4th Divisions and 
the French and British divisions had fought. All the Germans had gained was to deepen their 
pocket. They had put the point of their salient over a river in a bloody and unsuccessful effort. 
They were in reaction as the result of their failure; we were in the reaction from our depression. 
It was the turning point of psychology. Immediate advantage must be taken of the opportunity. 
The Germans had started a war of movement; we accepted the challenge at the moment that 
they were trembling and confused from the failui'e of their own initiative. We should not take 
the time for elaborate preparations which would reveal oui' point of attack; we should go in with 
the rush of Manoury's men in September, 1914, and along many of the same roads where he had 
struck Von Kluck. " 

Many boys from Buffalo fought that day — the Marne attack — with the 3d Division. They were 

■^ On the right tiank nf this (July 15th) offensive four companies of the Twenty-eighth Division were in position in face of the advancing waves 
of the German infantry. The Third Division was holding the bank of the Marne from the bend east of the mouth of the Surmelin to the west 
of Mezy, opposite Chateau Thierry, where a large force of German infantry sought to force a passage under support of powerful artillery con- 
centrations and under cover of smoke screens. A single regiment of the Third wrote one of the most brilliant pages in our military annals on 
this occasion. It prevented the crossing at certain points on its front while, on either flank, the Germans, who had gained a footing, pressed 
forward. Our men. firing in three directions, met the German attacks with counter attacks at critical points and succeeded in throwing two 
German divisions into complete confusion, capturing fiOO prisoners. — From Gfnt'ral Pershim/s Report, Noiriiibrr -20, 191s.) 

i^i' 4 '>A '^- ik 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 197 

in the 7th Infantry, which escaped the fury that had fallen to the 30th Infantry. On July 15th, 
in a letter home, Frank Mazurowski of 129 Coit Street, Company H, 7th Infantry, says they 
had been given a two-weeks' rest, after their Belleau Wood experience and were then sent up to 
the Marne River at Fossoy. 

" I had to work hard there, " he wrote, " I was at it day and night. Most of my work was getting 
hand grenades ready, and getting chow to the trenches." Getting "chow" to the trenches was 
a dangerous task, for food servers usually pass under continuous shell fire. "Ours was a fairly 
quiet place," his letter continues, "until the 14th of July. That night, or rather at 1 o'clock in 
the morning, the Gei-man guns broke loose. It was some barrage. I wanted to die — that is how 
bad it was. This I will never forget, but the Germans were held back until the 21st of July, on 
a Sunday morning, when we crossed the river. You should have seen the "square heads" as we 
call them. They were hanging dead on trees and all over the field. We chased them until July 
29th when we were relieved." 

Leo Dombrowski, another Buffalo Polish boy in the 3d Division, told the story of the Marne 
attack of the Germans on July 15th, with perhaps a little more of detail, but his view was the 
same. "We went up to the front," he says, "on the night of July 14th. A barrage came over 
from the Germans which lasted seven hours. We lost about a platoon and a half of the men of 
our company during this barrage. The Germans then came over and attacked the 30th Infantry 
of our Division. The 30th Infantry lost heavily but held on. Others fell back, and the Germans 
crossed the Marne, and proceeded down the Paris-Metz Road for about a quarter of a kilometer. 
The Germans held their position for five days. I think it was about July 22d we took the offen- 
sive. After crossing the Marne we advanced about 4 kilometers. The Germans were dug in and 
we encountered mostly machine gun nests. We went up into a little woods called Meurcy Farm, 
and in that woods we had a hot time with a lot of German snipers. They held us up for some 
time until we fianked them out. We lost many men in doing this. Other divisions had broken 
through their lines further up, and we then started our major advance going clean to Fismes. 
There we were relieved by the 28th Division about the end of July." 

Neither of the two Buffalo Polish boys were aware at that time of the American attack then 
being made on the other side of the Marne salient. General Pershing had persistently urged an 
attack on the German salient, as has been pointed out by Major Palmer, and General Foch 
was not unmindful of the value of the suggestion. General Retain worked out the plans for the 
attack. When the German drive of July 15th had been checked by the American 3d, it was 
quickly decided by the Allied High Command to hit back. Not, however, until 4 P. M. on the 
afternoon of July 17th, with the attack set for 5.35 on the morning of July 18th, were the plans 
for the attack drawn up and instructions given to the artillery and infantry commanders. 

General Pershing in his report tells briefly of the movements which broke up the Marne salient 
and finally turned the Germans back from Paris: 

"The great force of the German Chateau Thierry offensive established the deep Marne salient, but the enemy 
was taking chances, and the vulnerability of this pocket to attack might be turned to his disadvantage. Seizing 
this opportunity to support my conviction, every division with any sort of training was made available for use in a 
counter-offensive. The place of honor in the thrust toward Soissons on July 18th was given to our First and Second 
Divisions in company with chosen French divisions. Without the usual brief warning of a preliminary bombardment, 
the massed French and American artillery, firing by the map, laid down its rolling barrage at dawn while the infantry 
began its charge. The tactical handling of our troops under these trying conditions was excellent throughout the 
action. The enemy brought up large numbers of reserves and made a stubborn defense both with machine guns and 
artillery, but through five days' fighting the First Division continued to advance until it had gained the heights 
above Soissons and captured the village of Brezy-le-sec. The Second Division took Beau Repaire farm and Vierzy 
in a very rapid advance and reached a position in front of Tigny at the end of its second day. These two divisions 
captured 7,000 prisoners and over 100 pieces of artillery. 

"The Twenty-sixth Division, which, with a French division, was under command of our First Corps, acted as a 
pivot of the movement toward Soissons. On the 18th it took the village of Torcy while the Third Division was 
crossing the Marne in pursuit of the retiring enemy. The Twenty-sixth attacked again on the 21st, and the enemy 
withdrew past the Chateau Thierry-Soissons road. The Third Division, continuing its progress, took the heights of 
Mont St. Pere and the villages of Charteves and Jaulgonne in the face of both machine-gun and artillery fire. 

198 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

"On the 24th, after the Germans had fallen back from Trugny and Epieds, our Forty-second Division, which had 
been brought over from the Champagne, relieved the Twenty-sixth and, fighting its way through the Foret de Fere, 
overwhelmed the nest of machine guns in its path. By the 27th it had reached the Ourcq, whence the Third and 
Fourth Divisions were already advancing, while the French divisions with which we were co-operating were moving 
forward at other points. 

"The Third Division had made its advance into Roncheres Wood on the 29th and was relieved for rest by a brigade 
of the Thirty-second. The Forty-second and Thirty-second undertook the task of conquering the heights beyond 
Cierges. When the Forty-second and Thirty-second were relieved, the Seventy-seventh Division took up a position 
on the Vesle." 

As the story of these various engagements in the Marne battle, beginning with the holding of 
the Marne bridgehead on Memorial Day, 1918, is told in patches, it may be difficult for the 
reader to follow accurately, in this story, the various movements in which Buffalo men partici- 
pated. In reality, the holding of that bridgehead by the 7th Machine Gun Company was the 
first check of the (rerman Drive towards Paris. Two days later the Marines had flocked in on 
the Paris Road, somewhat west of Chateau-Thierry. While we have published statements fi-om 
but a few Buffalo boys, very many from Buffalo and the suiTounding towns were in that Marine 
Brigade which fought through the wheatfield and subsequently, throughout the month of June, 
through the Belleau Wood. 

During the time the 2d Division, to which the Marines were attached, was clearing the Belleau 
Wood, and thus holding a substantial element of the German attack, the 3d Division, supporting 
a French Division, had worked in along the railroad north of the bend of the Marne. Generally 
speaking, they wei-e in the territory as shown on the map between Chateau-Thierry and Epernay. 
It will be easy for the reader to find Fossoy on the map and that, for all practical purposes, will 
give one an idea of the location of the 3d Division. This Division also had quite a few Buffalo 
men in it, and early on the morning of the 15th of July they received the impact of the big Ger- 
man offensive, which, in truth, was the real thrust of the German army towards Paris. While 
not as many Buffalo men were engaged there as with the Marines, still quite a few of our towns- 
men participated in that terrific engagement and acquitted themselves with signal honors. The 
reader who has followed carefully the statements of Palmer and Pershing can realize that it was 
largely through the earnest appeals of the American Commander that the Allies determined on 
taking the offensive at this period; an offensive that stopped the Germans on all sides of the 
Marne Salient and by July 24th was rapidly turning them back at the Ourcq, heading them 
toward the Vesle. At this point General Pershing sent in the tearing, fighting 42d Division, 
putting them in the "clean up" position, with a view to breaking the German spirit. This they 
did, as is told by Major Donovan in the succeeding chapter. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 



MAJOR William J. Donovan, who conceived Troop I, Buffalo's crack little cavalry company 
of State Guard, years before the Mexican Border episode and who gained some military 
prestige, and, possibly, some military experience in the Mexican patrol, took an effective, and 
conspicuous part in the attack on the Marne salient. Major Donovan, then a Captain, left Buffalo 
directly after war was declared, and assumed the post of Brigade Adjutant of the First Brigade, 
New York. During his service on the border, his appointment had been asked as Lieutenant Colonel 
of the 69th. New York's "Fighting Sixty-Ninth" had taken a keen liking to Captain Donovan 
and that sentiment was reciprocated by the Buffalo officer. His designation as Lieutenant Colonel 
was not accomplished, however, but appreciating that the 69th, by reason of its record, would be 
one of the first National Guard units called for active service, he quickly accepted the duties of Brig- 
ade Adjutant as a preliminary step to field work with the 69th Regiment when it should move out. 

In the early days Troop I had been looked upon as a riding school for rich men's sons. The 
family "coat" was supposedly the bridle ornamentation of the Troop, and the members of that 
organization were sometimes called "Silk-stocking boys." 

Through the efforts of Captain Donovan and his Troop the co-operation of Senator John F. 
Malone, then an influential figure in the 
State Legislature at Albany, was obtained 
and an appropriation for an armory in Dela- 
van Avenue secured. The Troop grew rap- 
idly. They policed the industries at Depew 
during the big strike of 1913, and made a 
reputation for soldierly conduct and ability 
to take care of themselves in any kind of a 

Major Donovan was not the son of a rich 
father, but of parents from whom he in- 
herited a wealth of courage and of character. 
Those traits took him rapidly to the front 
in the legal profession, and, subsequently, in 
his military pursuit. He was born in Buffalo 
on New Year's Day, 1883. 

On July 15, 1914, Captain Donovan mar- 
ried Miss Ruth Rumsey, daughter of the 
late Dexter P. Rumsey, a pioneer Buffalo- 
nian of wealth and position. Mrs. Donovan 
tearfully but proudly and patriotically gave 
way to the demands of her country for 
the services of her husband, so splendidly 
equipped for military work. 

After his i-eturn from the Border, Captain 
Donovan learned that the Troop would 
probably remain in this country a long while, 
so he went to New York and called on Gen- 
eral O'Ryan for an assignment. He had Buffalo Boy Gets Croix de Guerre 

been in New York but a short time when Major D.movan being decorated by French Commander 

200 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

he was appointed a Major, and given the task of organizing Brigade Headquarters at the 71st 
Regiment Armory. When the 69th was ordered out as the first regiment to go to France with 
the 42d or Rainbow Division, he gladly quit his task as Brigade Adjutant to take command 
of the First Battalion of the old 69th, now the 165th Infantry. During the apprenticeship 
of the regiment at Camp Mills, New York, and in the training area in France, Major Donovan 
devised a system of preparation for the hardships of the campaign, along the lines of his own 
experience as a football player, and, as events proved, with very good success. 

The first intensive work which fell to Major Donovan in France was in the Luneville sector 
at Rouge Bouquet. On the night of the 13th of March, 1918, when Donovan's battalion was being 
reheved in the front line, the new troops were fired on by the Germans. One of the dugouts in 
which a number of men were working was hit by a huge minenwerfer, and caved in completely. 
While not of that command, Donovan secured permission, by reason of his familiarity with the 
location, to go to the scene, and, though exposed to shell fire thi-oughout, he steadied the men at 
their posts, and began operations to secure the release of the entombed men in the dugout. Or- 
ganizing a relief crew, he picked up ten men who had lost their way and started back with them, 
intending to bring up some engineers. Before leaving, however, he straightened out each man. 
He stopped for a minute to put his arm around a youngster on guard and asked him if he was 
"going to let those damned Dutchmen get his goat." In response, the boy said "No"; grasped 
his gun more firmly, and resumed his watch. Major Donovan started back through the dark for 
the post of command, but the Germans evidently heard the little party for it was greeted with 
a shower of shi-apnel and gas. They took cover in a woods. The shells struck all around them 
and ht up the dead trees. In the blaze of the explosions they could see the twigs and branches 
and sometimes the trees crash down. Some of the men were badly frightened, but Donovan 
finally got them all in and made his report. He had just reached his quarters, however, when the 
officer who had said they would get the imprisoned men out of the dugout reported that the 
vibrations from' the other bombardment had knocked down more earth and he had been obliged 
to take his relief crew out. Shells were still flying about the trenches when Major Donovan 
returned to the demolished dugout. There everybody had found shelter, leaving the entombed 
men to their fate. Donovan ordered all hands to work; had coffee prepared for the workers, 
declaring that if they did not succeed in releasing the men they would at least establish the fact 
that a United States soldier is never deserted by his comrades no matter how difficult the situa- 
tion. As Donovan entered the trenches, he tripped over the body of a dead soldier, and found 
it was the boy around whose shoulders a few minutes before he had thrown his arm. When the 
shelling began they had called to the lad to seek cover, but he had refused to leave his post. He 
was hit on the head with a piece of shrapnel and killed instantly. With a few brave men and 
officers, Donovan went down a stairway leading to the demolished dugout, with only a candle 
lighting their way. Shells were hitting around them. Cold, muddy, dead hands stuck up out of 
the earth here and there. Two young officers stood on the stairs above Donovan, tense and white 
and tired; willing to face all personal dangers, but rapidly losing their nerve at the thought of 
the poor devils under the wi-eckage, and the absolute futility and helplessness of it all. As Dono- 
van looked at the mass of earth it was brought home to him that nothing more could be done, 
and that that must be their tomb. He said afterwards, "I almost wished that the rest of the 
covering would fall and bury me." It was two o'clock in the morning when he came out of the 
trench; saw that the guards were posted and that everybody was "on his feet" again, and started 
back four miles through the dark to headquarters to make his report. For his courage and 
coolness on that occasion Major Donovan was awarded, by the French Army, the Croix de Guerre. 

July 15th when the German drive which spent much of its fury on the Third Division near 
Fossoy, was on, the 42d Division was in the defense of the line at Champagne. Sevei-al Buffalo 
boys were now in that Division having been transferred from the 77th at Baccarat. The bulk of 
the fighting there fell upon Major Anderson with the Second Battalion. After the First and 
Second Divisions had made their thrust through the German salient at Soissons on the west. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 201 

and the Third and Fourth were striking north, the 42d went into action on the southeastern 
side of the salient, going over on July 27th. On July 28th the Third Battalion, under Major 
M'Kenna, led the attack across the Ourcq. While there has been some dispute as to which Batta- 
lion was first across, the Division Commander and Father Duffy, the regimental chaplain, 
both support the pi-ecedence of M'Kenna's Battalion. In the remaining four days of the fighting 
however, the operations in the field were conducted by Major Donovan until the Germans were 
finally driven from their position to a depth of ten kilometers. Major Donovan was wounded 
in that action, but refused to leave the front; he was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross,* 
and, a vacancy occurring shortly afterward, was made Lieutenant Colonel of the regiment. In 
a letter written to his wife, Colonel Donovan gives an interesting account of that engagement: 

"August 7, 1918, 5.30 P. M. 

"More of life has been crowded into the past few weeks than I have ever known before. Let me begin — On the 
morning of July 25th we left our little town of Champigny in camions, 16 men in each camion, so that we stretched 
for miles. I rode in a little Ford with the French lieutenant in charge, for it was French camion service, and such a 
sight I have never witnessed. The Germans were only three days ahead of us. We passed through fields and towns 
still filled with their dead and our dead. The roads were choked with supply wagons, artillery and machine guns. 
Artillerymen were asleep on their horses. Machine gun drivers were going along with their heads on their knees 
and their reins dragging in the dirt. We were relie\'ing the 26th Division. The other brigade of our division had 
gone up the night before. For about a half hour we stopped at Chateau Thierry. In time of peace this must be 
beautiful. I went into three fine mansions which the Germans had occupied. Books and paintings and clothing had 
been pulled from their places and scattered indiscriminately. It was evident that these homes had been quitted 
by their owners hurriedly, because private papers and letters were lying about so that anyone might read them. 
Most of the town was just a mass of ruins. I went into the hallway of one house, and found a French soldier and 
from him borrowed a piece of cheese and a crust of bread and canteen of water. That was the first meal I had that 
day, and it was 3 o'clock. About 7 P. M., we arrived at the little town of Epieds and marched right straight into 
an air battle in which the German planes predominated. They came down over our camions and fired their machine 
guns into us. No one was hurt. One plane came sailing over us not far back of where we made a quick turn and 
then passing directly over one of our observation balloons fired down around it and passed on. It was very brilliantly 
and daringly done. Immediately the observer dropped in his parachute and the balloon went up in flames. We 
marched to the Chateau Moucheton, which only a few days before had been German Brigade Headquarters. It 
was very cold and very wet. Our wagons were not in — we had no food, excepting the men who had their reserve 
rations with them. As the night wore on Ames (Captain Ames) and I got in on the floor of an ambulance and managed 
to get a little sleep. 

"The ne.xt morning we made reconnoissance of our position, and it was decided that my battalion should go in and 
relieve an entire French Regiment near a town called Beauvardes. In the afternoon with my company officers we 
made reconnoissance of these woods and ran into a terrific fight between our 84th Brigade and the Germans. It was 
very hot and bloody. Two of my company commanders were wounded. A shell mixed with high explosives and gas 
hit the roof directly over my head. The rain of rocks and dirt and tile fell about us, and we each got a beautiful 
mouthful of gas. 

"My battalion was on the move to make the relief but orders came sending them back to the Chateau, as the 
relief was off. The doctor gave me some sniffs of ammonia, fixed up my eyes with boracic acid and then laid me 
down on a billiard table in the Chateau and I thought I was there for the night. About midnight, however, orders 
came directing us to complete the relief, and then in the rain and the darkness we marched nine kilometers, stretched 
along in columns of twos, with fifty yards distance between platoons and one hundred yards between companies, 
so that it seemed like quite an army. It was no easy matter making a relief in the woods with the Germans taking 
pot shots at you, but, finally, we managed to effect it, and I lay in a ditch with a blanket around me, for an hour's 
sleep. The next morning, in making the rounds, I noticed an unusual stillness, and made report of the fact to head- 
quarters. We then learned that they had pulled out under cover of darkness, and were retreating some four kilo- 


From: Division Adjutant, 42d Division. September 13, 1918. 

To: Lieutenant Colonel William J. Donovan. 165th Infantry, 

(Through Military Channels). 
Subject — Citation for Dicoration. 

The Commander in Chief, in the name of the President, has awarded you the Distinguished Service Cross (presented you September 7. 1918) 
for the following act: 

" Major William J. Donovan, 165th Infantry. 
"He led his battalion across the River Ourcq and captured important enemy strongholds near Villers-sur-Fere, France, on 28th to 3Uth July, 1918. 
He was in advance of the Division for four days, all the while under shell and machine gun fire from the enemy, who were on three sides of him, 
and he was repeatedly and persistently counter-attacked. Fifty per cent of his command were lost and he himself wounded twice. His coolness, 
courage and efficient leadership rendered possible the maintenance of this position." 
By Command of Major General Menoher. 

Walter E. Powers, Major, U. S. A., Adjidanl General. 


Buffalo's Part ix the World War 

meters ahead of us. We received orders to advance. I was tacked up on the flank of the Alabama Regiment. We 
started in the afternoon. We made the advance in line of small groups and marched through large forests over the 
same grounds the Germans had left just a few hours before. They had made a very orderly retreat as they had through 
all this territory. They had gotten away with all their rolling stock and had left behind only large and small shells, 
most of which were dated April, May and .June of this year. Dead horses were lying all about, but only a few unburied 
Germans. We found many newly-made graves, but no wounded. 

"About 7.00 P. M. we left the woods and came out on a hill on the southwestern part of a place of which you 
have often heard — Sergy. This town was on the other side of the Ourcq River and looked very suspicious to me. 
I halted my outfit and with that the 168th also halted. I then sent out patrols to the left to get in touch with the 
French who were supposed to be there, but I could not find them. Then we heard a burst of machine-gun fire and the 
patrol came back towards us at a gallop, one riderless horse. We had gained contact. Then the lieutenant in com- 
mand came back and reported to me, and all of us lay on our stomachs while the shells began to burst all around 
us. It was a perfect place for a fight. This town lay in a little basin, while up behind us lay high hills. We lay on 
the forward slope. As darkness was coming over, I moved the Battalion back on the reverse slope, where it could 
be a little freer from the fire. That was a horrible night. It was cold, wet and damp, and the shells were pretty 
uncomfortable. I sat on the ground with my knees huddled up to my chin and managed to sleep two or three hours. 
At 4.30 A. M. orders came in that we were to lead an attack further to our left. I went forward to where the Colonel's 
post was and reported, and while there received a message from the General to advance and cover the right of the 
3d BattaUon. That meant an advance of two kilometers in the face of heavy artillery fire. The Battalion then did 
what I think was one of the best things I have seen. We made that advance of our tw^o kilometers in an approach 
formation, passed through a woods, crossed the River Ourcq with only five casualties. Shells were bursting all 
around us. I shall never forget Ames. He was handling his little detachment, as I was waiting at the river, like a 
quarterback of a football team. We got up on top of the hill which we were directed to take and dug in. The other 
Battalions were unable to stand the fire and fell back through us. 

"All that day we were subjected to heavy artillery and machine-gun fire. As it wore on, some of the positions 
that the German machine guns had abandoned were resumed and they got in a cross-fire on us that made a heavj- 
toll. That day, however, I lost only one officer. Two or three of the men dug in a little hole that night and Ames 
and I crept into it and I had a very refreshing two and a half hours sleep, which, with a cup of coffee and a piece of 
bacon gave us new life. 

"The next morning we were ordered to connect up with the Ohio Regiment on our left and advance to a new objec- 
tive. The machine gunners had climbed in so close to us in the night that it was very difficult to move. To get to 

An Allied Bombing Plane on Its Way to Metz 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 203 

our position we liad to face a machine gun nest, with two machine guns in the nest they put forth a burst of fire as 
each man crossed the open space. Before we got going the first ten men crossing dropped, shot, and yet the next, 
without a falter, went over. There were some fine examples of daring and courage. 

"Finally we got back where the stream took a bend, and we were able to get under cover of a bank. Here I lost 
one officer, killed. The battalion commanders on the right and left refused to move forward at all without obtaining 
artillery assistance. I said that we would go forward in accordance with orders. It was simply a matter of duty. 
One sergeant took a platoon against a machine-gun nest. He had twenty men when he started and when he reached 
the gun, he had four. But he took the gun and the seven men who were serving it. We took very few prisoners. 
The men, when they saw the Germans with Red Crosses on one sleeve and serving machine guns against us, firing 
until the last minute, then cowardly throwing up their hands and crying "Kamerad," became just lustful for Ger- 
man blood. I do not blame them. Several officers and men were wounded and killed, and when I heard that Captain 
Bootz, who was just ahead of me, was wounded, I ran forward to see that the line was steadied. I met him as he 
was being carried out and I lay down by the side of a stream to talk with him. Ames came running up behind me to 
look out for me. I ordered him back, but he just smiled and said he was going to stay with me. He came up and lay 
beside me. A sniper began to play on us and machine gun bullets crossed my shoulder and struck Ames in the ear. 
He died instantly. I reached for him, and as I did, another bullet struck me in the hand. I rolled into the creek, 
worked my way up to a group of men, and with that fire playing over us, stayed there for three-quarters of an hour 
with mud and water above our waists. An aeroplane came over us, saw these troops advancing up the creek, gave 
its signal to its artillery, and soon shells began to drop all around us and in the creek itself. I got the men out and into 
a wood which was in the very center of the position, and had them entrench in the hillside, and on the farm and dug 
in for the night. We had advanced some three kilometers without any support either on our right or on our left 
flank, with no artillery preparation and with no auxiliary arms. We had done it with rifles, machine guns and bayonets 
and against artillery and machine guns. 

"All that night we held on and all the next day, with no food, the machine guns which the Germans had placed sweep- 
ing us constantly. I do not know why I was not killed. I had been previously hit on the chest with a piece of stone 
or shell which ripped my gas mask and another piece of shell had hit me on the left heel, tearing my shoe, and throw- 
ing me off my balance, while somehow I got some shrapnel in my leg. I guess I have been born to be hanged. All 
my headquarters oflicers had been killed or wounded, except Weller. I had Joyce Kilmer, who is a sergeant, and 
whose poetry you have undoubtedly read, acting as Sergeant Major, my own Sergeant Major having been wounded. 
Kilmer got a bullet in the head. He was buried beside Ames. 

"I had worked into a position a little to the right rear of the Germans. We were in a very narrow and very dan- 
gerous salient but we had observation on them. I got on the edge of this wooded knoll with an extension telephone 
and a map. I had six machine guns, a stokes-mortar and a 37 millimeter. From there I furnished information not 
only to our ow n regiment but to those on the left and right. I would use the stokes and the 37m. to strike some of 
the shell holes where the Germans were hidden and then as they would start to get away we would shoot them up 
with the machine gun. 

"Relief was effected about 2.30 in the morning. At 3.00 o'clock I lay on the ground and slept a very refreshing 
sleep until 6.00 o'clock when the Lieutenant Colonel awakened me and announced that the Germans had pulled out 
and that he was sending forward patrols from the 3d Battalion. I hiked back to the town where my Battalion had 
been sent and awakened them and then we started out again. We went over the field on which we had fought and 
while we found our own dead, we found five Germans for every one of us. The Germans kept on retreating and were 
moving on to the next forest. We took Moreuil, as you have read in the papers before this, without opposition. 
Then we were relieved by another division. We marched back that night through the old farm we had taken, crossed 
the stream we had crossed some days before and not a sound from the men. It has its dramatic touch! 

"In eight days of battle, our Division had forced the passage of the Ourcq, taken prisoners from six enemy divisions, 
met, routed and decimated a crack division of the Prussian Guards, a Bavarian division and one other division and 
driven back the enemy's line for 16 kilometers. In every day of that fight our battalion had participated. It had 
never retired: it had gone the farthest and stayed the longest. 

"The Division Commander and the Regimental Commander were good enough to say that it was our Battalion 
that had cracked the shell and that it was our tenacity in rushing forward and hanging on that had made the day 
possible. They have been good enough to recommend me for a cross in terms which are too exaggerated." 

204 Buffalo's Part in the World War 


riEUTENANT HAROLD Wertz, the old 74th Regiment Sergeant who had won his commission 
. at Madison Barracks, took a courageous part in the Soissons onslaught to reduce the Marne 
■* salient. He went over the top on July 18th with the First Division, the 18th Regiment 
forming the point of the attack. His captain was hit by a machine gun bullet before they had 
proceeded far. Wertz assumed command immediately and led the company for three days through 
a vigorous and unrelenting offensive. Just before the German salient was finally crushed in, 
Wertz, while leading his company over a knoll, was struck in the left wrist with a machine gun 
bullet. He went on for some time until he began to waver from the loss of blood; a non-com- 
missioned officer took him to the rear. The bullet had entered just above the palm of his hand, 
followed the bone, and came out on the back of the forearm near the elbow. The wound was 
received on July 21st. He was in the hospital for more than a month, returning in time for the St. 
Mihiel drive, but was destined for harder struggles and severer wounds than he had yet experienced. 

Dombrowski, with the 3d Division, got as far as Fismes. About 4 o'clock in the afternoon of 
July 28th while attacking Fismes, Dombrowski started across a field — a mustard gas shell landed 
near him. Mustard gas shells make but little noise when exploding. He was heavily gassed, the 
effect of it taking away his voice for a period of eight days. After spending a little more than a 
month in a hospital he was returned to his command on September 2d. 

The effect of this American-French offensive of July 18th was to wipe out the Marne salient 
and put the fear of God into the German heart. The crisis, which the German drive of March 
21st on the British line and of May 27th toward Paris created, now having been successfully 
met, plans were again put in operation to establish an American front. Early in August General 
Foch made known to the military commanders that the Americans were going to try to reduce 
the St. Mihiel salient which had stood impregnable for four years. 

The First American Army was organized on August 10th under the command of General 

"While American units had held different divisional and corps sectors along the Western Front, 
there had not been up to this time, for obvious reasons," said General Pershing, "a distinct Amer- 
ican sector; but, in view of the important parts the American forces were now to play, it was 
necessary to take over a permanent portion of the line. Accordingly, on August 30th, the line 
beginning at Port sur Seille, east of the Moselle, and extending to the west through St. Mihiel, 
thence north to a point opposite Verdun, was placed under my command. The American sector 
was afterwards extended across the Meuse to the western edge of the Argonne Forest, and included 
the Second Colonial French, which held the point of the salient, and the Seventeenth French 
Corps, which occupied the heights above Verdun. 

"The preparation for a complicated operation against the formidable defenses in front of us 
included the assembling of divisions and of corps and army artillery, transport, aircraft, tanks, 
ambulances, the location of hospitals, and the molding together of all of the elements of a great 
modern army with its own railheads, supplied directly by our own service of supply. The concentra- 
tion for this operation, which was to be a surprise, involved the movement, mostly at night, of ap- 
proximately 600,000 troops, and required for its success the most careful attention to every detail. 

"The French were generous in giving us assistance in corps and army artillery, with its per- 
sonnel, and we were confident from the start of our superiority over the enemy in guns of all 
calibres. Our heavy guns were able to reach Metz and to interfere seriously with German rail 
movements. The French Independent Air Force was placed under my command which, together 
with the British bombing squadrons and our air forces, gave us the largest assembly of aviation 
that had ever been engaged in one operation on the Western Front." 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 205 



DORIS Kellogg and the other Buffalo girls working in canteens in France during the months 
of June, July and August were engaged in hard, nerve-racking work. Caring for thousands 
of soldiers who passed along the line of communication was no easy task for those girls. 
The physical hardships, long hours, heavy trays, and unending service sapped their strength. 
However, they never faltered. 

From early in June, through the hot days of July and August, the roads were blocked with 
soldiers going back and forth from the front lines; new men arriving, the wounded ones on their 
way back to the hospitals. Writing from Chantilly whei-e Miss Kellogg was stationed, she stated 
that one of the saddest things in the world to her was the daily trip they took to the funerals 
of the American boys who died in the hospitals there. "I tell you, since I have seen the Star 
Spangled Banner draping those coffins, the flag has a new meaning to me," she said. 

About June 10th, Miss Kellogg and the other members of her party were detached from the 
hospital service, where they temporarily filled in, and were detailed to their canteen work at Orry- 
le-Ville. Writing from Chantilly, where they had their rooms. Miss Kellogg set down in a very 
attractive way the story of canteen work in France from June to August. 

"The White House, Chantilly, France, June 19, 1918. 

"At last I have seen the 'terrible Boche,' — seven hundred prisoners just went through Chantilly, fresh from the 
front. Oh. let me omit that 'fresh,' for they were anything but that, just a worn-out bedraggled bunch of Fritzies. 
First four hundred of them shuffled past me on the road, and then I followed them till they were halted along the 
railroad tracks beside the empty freight cars which were to take them South. As I was staring at them with firm 
mouth, I saw another bunch coming along. I beat it out to the road and saw three hundred more, about ten officers 
in the first lines. I looked at them pretty closely and found that most of them were quite young boys, many of them 
very sickly and thin. Of course, they were prisoners and that meant, probably, had been fighting hard these past 
few days, at any rate were pretty tired, but even so, I think them a much less formidable bunch than the French, 
and, of course, a thousand times less fit than our boys. 

"I really tried quite hard to get up some feeling of hate toward those 'terrorizing Huns,' but I simply could not 
manage it. They were so thin-necked and pinched about the eyes. The officers looked a million times better kept 
than the men. The Fritzies' uniforms are pretty seedy, patched and faded but a marvelous color as far as camouflage 
goes, grey-green that quite melts into the landscape, and steel helmet the same color, some camouflaged, which comes 
quite down over the ears and protects also the back of the neck. Only a few had their helmets and the others wore 
those little round caps with a scarlet band. 

"I hear that Ahce O'Brian of Buffalo is coming up to the canteen next door to us as Directrice. It will be quite 
nice to see someone from Buffalo. I saw Sheldon Hodge one day out at some American Field Day Sports." 

"June 25th. 

"Now the work is coming so fast and furiously. Every day new experiences lived through. We are running two 
canteens and that makes us have to double up on our work — so you can imagine how we have to scurry. But work 
certainly agrees with me and I am in fine health, — and not losing weight — alack-a-day! 

"We were asked to take over the canteen at Serveilliers, the next railroad stop from Orry, where the soldiers are 
taken care of on their way home from the Front." 

(From then on the work each day was very much the same, plenty to do; thousands of French 
soldiers were fed and refreshed as they marched through.) 

"July 15th. 

"Last night the Huns flew over us on their way to Paris and the Creil defense guns shook our house. Al and I 
went down to the cave like the sensible girls we are. My, but it was a brilliant night, clear moon and many stars, 
and all about 'eclat' bursting in the sky. You have no idea of the different feeling in the atmosphere now, as com- 
pared with that during the last offensive. Then every one was grim and apprehensive, but now the morale has shot 
up like a rocket and we all expect fine things to come. There is a suppressed excitement like electricity in the air. ' ' 

"July 19th. 

"As we drove into Chantilly this evening in our camion, we saw lined up in front of the station masses and masses 
of German prisoners. We were ready to scream with joy. There were fifteen hundred of them and all taken by our 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 

-.-i-J^Cv ^1t3-',, 

Rheims. France, April 5, 1919 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 207 

boys at Soissons to-day. It is too wonderful. I stood so near them as they marched past that they bumped into me 
time after time. I must tell you that those Huns were the most encouraging sight I've seen since I've been in France. 
No exaggeration, they are a terribly mangy-looking crowd — poor uniforms to begin with, pieced and worn, and then 
they are very young and have a decidedly under-nourished look, thin and very poor color. There were two captains 
and many lieutenants, and quite a bunch of them were wounded. 

"But to-night was the most unforgetable experience of them all. The wounded are pouring in here by scores and 
we heard that they needed food over at the huge tent evacuation hospital and that there were many Americans there. 
So after dinner we got our camion, loaded it with a crate of tobacco, hot chocolate, bread and eggs, and Al ran us 
over. I cannot begin to express the condition of things in those tents. They are swamped with wounded and with- 
out hope of doing anything for the men except what is utterly essential. There, lying about in the grass, were the 
wounded Germans, blood-caked and exhausted: some of the worst cases were given a tent and I watched them going 
in, helping each other as well as they could. One boy was crawling and dragging one leg — It was too pitiful and I 
had to give him an encouraging smile. He appreciated that and smiled back so gratefully. We gave some cigarettes 
to one old Red Cross Fritzie who, we were told by an American had given first aid to twelve of our wounded boys 
on the battlefield. 

"Then we took off our coats and pitched in. I gave water to men who were writhing in pain, fed men who had not 
eaten for two and three days and tried my best to make the poor devils a little bit comfortable on their stretchers 
that will be their beds for a day or so more probably. I went from gaunt, sunken-eyed Frenchmen to our own open- 
faced Americans. The French with their exquisite appreciation thanked me so beautifully and our boys smiled 
and said, 'She's an American all right.' But most of them could not rally enough to even think, and after giving them 
some water we just let them rest. The most heart-rending time of all is when you have to refuse a boy a drink on 
account of the location of his wound. It makes your heart ache as though it were being torn out. Then it got 
dark, and in the dim electric light those long rows of suffering soldiers were awful. As we came out to the auto, the 
ambulances were still piling in, and the full moon gave enough light to help along the work of unloading. 

"One more thing before I go to sleep. They say we are two and a half miles from Soissons and that it must fall." 

"Chantilly, July 25th. 

"You know it's the saddest thing in the world. Every morning now some of us take time off to go to the funerals 
of our boys who die here in the hospitals. We follow the hearses a long way through the forest road to a new ceme- 
tery that has been cleared this last week. You can imagine the impressiveness of it all, so simple, with no unnecessary 
flourishes. I tell you, since I've seen our Star Spangled Banner draping those coflins the flag has had a new meaning 
to me. 

"Yesterday I wrote letters for our boys who couldn't manage it themselves. I had the funniest time trying to 
get them to tell me what to say. They'd say, 'Well, you just go ahead and write just like you was writin' home.' 

"So I'd exercise my imagination a bit, and then when I got to the end I'd say, 'Now how shall I end it?' No 
suggestions forthcoming. 

"Well, shall I say 'with love?' I asked one big fellow to whose mother and father I was writing. He simply roared 
at that, and, stretching in an embarrassed way, said, 'This ain't no love letter. No, just say, "I remain your son, 

"Having learned a lesson in correspondence from the above mentioned .Jeremiah, I repeat in his words, only alter- 
ing the word 'son', I remain your daughter — Doris." 

July, 30th. 

"My, but it was interesting yesterday here in Chantilly, long lines of squirming, straining tanks passed 
through town at different intervals all day. They were coming from the Front where they have been fighting with our 
Marines at Chateau Thierry and were the raciest looking things in the world, covered with mud and dust and so 
cleverly camouflaged and with wicked-looking guns sticking out of their turrets. I think I have had a slight change 
of heart since yesterday, and from now on these marvelous tankers are my matinee idols. They are really snappier 
than the aviators, though one really should not compare them, they are so different. The ace is always perfectly 
'soigner' (well groomed), and goodness knows attractive enough, but your tanker is a dashing, a devil-may-care fellow, 
in black baret (tarn), black leather coat and a long knife stuck through his belt. I couldn't help but think of them as 
pirates of the land, in their rolling, heaving tanks. We handed each fellow a package of cigarettes as he passed. It 
was like feeding animals; a hand would be thrust out of the small opening in the front of the tank where the driver 
sits, grab the smokes, and then be drawn quickly in again. In front of each machine stalked the gunner, too snappy 
for anything, with knife in belt, and a long, easy stride. Really it was a great sight." 

Through the long Summer the girls worked hard at that canteen, but in October they were 
to be given a furlough for rest. Just before leaving Miss Kellogg wrote: 

"From serving meals to six hundred Poilus every day at noon time, we have now jumped up to twelve and thir- 
teen hundred, and I can tell you it means some exertion on the part of 'ces dames.' All this eating goes on within 
about four hours. Yesterday I was 'tray slinger' and passed over eleven hundred meals from the serving table to 
the counter in three hours and a half. I have to admit that last night after I got to bed I was so tired and I ached 

208 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

so that I couldn't go to sleep till dear old Al rubbed all the knots out of my muscles. But 'I should worry,' for I 
succeeded in buying five 'Gott Mit Uns' belts to bring home to anyone who wants them. Kell is to have one to wear 
with his white flannels — they are awfully 'swanky!' (the last is our latest expression, acquired from our two Aus- 
tralian co-workers). We get the Poilus here on their way home from the Front, and they have lots of Boche trophies 
which, as luck and military law will have it, the men are not allowed to take home with them. One of the girls got 
a short bayonet with a saw edge; it seems that the Hun uses his spare time in the trenshes to hack teeth in the 
blade. It must be quite satisfying, this self-expression of his artistic nature." 

While the Meuse-Argonne offensive was in progress a number of American canteen workers were 
moved into territory adjacent to the American sector. Miss Kellogg had been chosen for work 
with the American forces, and late in October received a furlough of ten days, before taking up 
the new post. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 



THROUGH the rigid censorship during America's heavy fighting months but little intelligent 
news trickled. We grew into a habit of reading hurriedly and doubting what we read. The 
war cables refused to be more definite than "some unit" of daring Americans, "some time" 
on the preceding day or week, "somewhere in Finance " accomplished something. Newspaper 
stories carried the reader to an interesting point in a narrative and then appeared the word "de- 
leted," and we tried to guess what in reality had happened. We knew Don Martin, New York 
Herald correspondent and knew he would be close to the real situation, and we knew further 
that what he set down for perusal would be as accurate as human eyes could see it and human 
hands could write it, and as complete as the censorship would permit. We finally felt convinced 

that American boys were succeed- 
ing; that Chateau Thierry and Bel- 
leau Wood had become monuments 
to the valor of the American ma- 
rines, and that it was being impres- 
sively demonstrated to the edifica- 
tion of the Prussian war party that 
a new force had come into the war 
whose fighting spirit, at least, was 
not to be denied. We received ac- 
counts of new American successes 
as over the top the doughboys went, 
but nothing came through of Amer- 
ican losses or defeats. We did not 
realize until months later there had 
been no American defeats, but we 
gradually began to hear of losses. 
In August, 1918, Don Martin, writing to his daughter, told rather briefly, but clearly, the 
situation as it then existed. It was the first real intimate estimate of the American achieve- 
ments anyone in Buffalo had received, and it thrilled those who were fortunate enough to read 
the letter. He wrote: 

"Dorothy: "Meaux, August 4, 1918. 

"I suppose you are in Chautauqua or Dahm's Beach or some pleasant place by this time. I trust such is the case. 
I wish I were with you. It is quite easy to get enough of this war — to get 'fed up' on it as the saying goes. 

"The war is going along pretty well just now for the Allies. We were all surprised at the extent of the German 
retreat and the vigor of the Allied attack. The great importance of the present situation is, not the territory regained, 
but the placing of the Germans on the defensive. Now the Allies have the initiative. The Germans must be guessing 
all the time at the next move. It has always been the other way, General Foch's and General Petain's skill as strate- 
gists, backed by the American troops, made the Allied offensive possible. The German has now been outgeneraled 
and outfought. The French did the outgeneraling; the Americans most strikingly did the outfighting. 

"The Americans are by far the most wonderful fighters in Europe. No exception need be made. They are all 
young men who don't know what it means to turn back. They may be reckless. We may suffer heavy losses because 
of the impetuosity of the Americans; but it is that "get there or die' spirit and the utter lack of fear, which has 
temporarily stunned the Germans and which will win the war. Europe never saw fighting such as the Americans 
are putting up. Perhaps Napoleon's Old Guard was good, but certainly no better, than the Americans. Now Germany 
stands no more chance of winning the war than I do of being President of France. Her teeth have been pulled. On 
the defensive she can fight for years, if necessary, and fight a desperate war, but the crest of her wave has been passed. 
She is bound to slip, slip, slip until she is defeated. And America has made it possible! 

' 'We have a vast army here now and a vast army ready to fight. Along the roads in a part of the front now there 
are more Americans to be seen than anything else. I ask man.V of them where they are from. One says ' Alabama,' 

German Skeleton With Gas Mask on Chest Found 
on Battlefield 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 

one 'Arizona,' 'Missouri,' 'Michigan,' 'Florida,' 'New York,' 'Ohio,' 'Wyoming'— or they come from every State 
and all look alike somehow. 

"Yesterday afternoon, on a hill overlooking the town of Cierges, I saw 56 Americans buried in a big grave. Strangely 
enough a German clergyman from Milwaukee, conducted the ceremony. Of course, he is an American, and, I judge 
from what he said, a very good one. These men were killed by machine-gun bullets while capturing a woods where 
the Germans were strongly entrenched. I wrote quite a story about the fight for the woods. On the field adjoining 
I saw dead Huns all over; in the woods there are scores of them. Around a little farm of ten acres, known as Bellevue 
Farm, I counted 72 dead Germans in a trench and could have counted more than a hundred in a quarry nearby, if 
I had cared to do so. I was there the day after the battle occurred. The farm house was banged all to pieces but 
the old couple (I mentioned them in a story I wrote last night), were back trying to do something with the ruin. I 
could not help but feel that it is a fine thing to have someone come in and use your house and farm for a battlefield. 
I went along the entire wake of the retreating Germans; saw the fires at night, caused by burning ammunition dumps, 
and heard the constant booming of our guns which were dropping shells on the roads over which the fleeing Germans 
were going. The scene along these roads is not a pleasant one. 

"I hope the people at home are reconciled to the fact that the United States will pay a heavy price in lives to win 
the war. It can't be helped. It seems a terrible thing, but the blame must be put on Germany. And how the Ameri- 
cans hate the Germans! The spirit runs all through the army. The Germans are triek-y and unfair, as the newspapers 
have told you. The men at machine guns keep shooting at the enemy until they see they are bound to be captured, 
when they put up their hands and cry ' Kamarad,' meaning they want to surrender. One man with a machine gun 
can kill or wound from 200 to 1,000 soldiers and the theory of the Americans is that a German who has done every- 
thing he could to murder and then asks for mercy should be treated with a bayonet or a rifle bullet— and that is 
precisely what happens. The Americans, however, never disregard the cry of ' Kamarad ' when the soldiers give up 
in an honorable way. The truth of the whole situation is the Germans have found a foe that can lick them every 
time they meet, and Germany is worried." 

An AiUL-ncaii Murine Receiving Instructions from a French Blue 
in the Value of Individual Concealment 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 




During the period the American Army was engaged in crushing the Marne Salient, and 
before the 77th Division began to fight its way through the valley of the Vesle, Buffalo's 
National Guardsmen, the old 74th, co-operating with the British, were holding the line 
before Kemmel Hill. Most of their time through the months of July and August was spent on 
that front, the Buffalo boys being located in what is generally known as the Dickebush Swamp. 
They were in a low land and in a position where they could not inflict much damage on the enemy 
being subject themselves, however, to shelling and raiding parties. They left the Mt. Kemmel 
front on the 31st of August. The period of time beginning with their landing in France until 
they pulled out on that hot summer's day, forms a rather interesting chapter in the history of 
their career. 

The 108th Infantry arrived at Brest in the Spring of 1918 on two separate convoys. Those 
arriving in the first convoy were Headquarters and the First Battalion, stepping foot on French 
soil on May 24th, while the detachments consisting of the Second and Third Battalions dis- 
embarked on May 31st. The first named contingent was camped at Fort Bougon on the out- 
skirts of Brest, while the latter was quartered at Pontenezen Barracks, between two and three 
miles from the City. The latter place is of particular interest historically as it was at one time 
a barracks and training headquarters for the Armies of Napoleon. The barracks proper were 
surrounded by an old stone wall enclosing stone buildings of considerable age. These were being 
used at the time for much the same purpose as they had been in the past, such as quarters for 
troops, warehouses, jails or guardhouses, hospitals, commandant's headquarters and officers' 
quarters. The accommodations were much too small to care for incoming American troops. For 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 213 

this reason various fields for many miles on each side had been taken over for camp sites, while 
others were used simply for bivouac shelter tent camps. 

Fortunately the weather was continuously fair and warm so that privations which would have 
loomed large under other circumstances were lost sight of in the novelty experienced by newly 
arrived troops. The change from a regular and fairly abundant ship's mess to that supplied by 
entirely inadequate issue from the camp commissary was very noticeable. To add to the difficulty 
most of the units were at once put to work on the docks to aid, in conjunction with negro troops, 
unloading freight from the transports, which work was kept up during 24 hour shifts and should 
have been backed up with hearty, well-cooked meals. Still, in spite of those drawbacks, work was 
carried on with great cheerfulness on the part of the men. 

After about a week of that duty which served well in losing their sea-legs, and once more teach- 
ing them to shift for themselves, they entrained by battalions and similar units for a three day 
train trip, destination, of course, unknown. Later developments proved that they were on 
their way to the Abbeville area to join the British forces with which they were to be affiliated. 

It was on that trip the men first used that antiquated and battle-scarred side-door "Pullman," 
henceforth to be known to the doughboy as "40 Hommes, 8 Chevaux." In those carriages, 
scarcely larger than a piano box, were crowded thirty-two men plus their equipment and rations, 
and although subjected on that and future movements to considerable scorn and ridicule, that 
means of transportation served its purpose throughout their continental travelling experience. 
This first ride took them to Noyelles, north of the Somme, a place used by the British for han- 
dling troops sent into the Abbeville area for training. 

The train schedules were apparently so arranged as to bring all arrivals to Noyelles in the morn- 
ing to allow time for detraining, messing and turning in surplus equipment preparatory to march- 
ing into billets in the Abbeville area. Their arrival at Noyelles marked the time at which they were 
supposed to leave behind the customs and traditions of the U. S. Army in which they had been 
so carefully brought up, in order that they might study and adapt themselves to those of our 
Allies the British, with whom their lot had been cast for the duration of the war. It was there- 
fore with a chip on their shoulder they climbed out and organized their forces under the super- 
vision of British officials. A 48-hour train trip with meager fare and sleepless nights added nothing 
to the frame of mind with which they met their future comrades-in-arms. 

They were hurried by detachments for mess to an unusually dirty area, set aside for feeding 
detraining troops and at that point received their initiation into the mysteries of the British issue. 
It consisted of two hard-tack, one-half cup of tea and one-fourth tin of "bully-beef "per man. 
Poor fare after the famine of a three-day train trip. After messing was finished the troops were 
distributed by units in surrounding fields and relieved of all surplus articles so that ultimately 
each soldier carried away what later proved to be the regular fighting equipment of Ameri- 
can soldiers with the British Army. The surplus property was stacked in piles, each of its 
kind, blankets, shoes, blouses, breeches, underwear, etc. These were quickly made into bundles 
and reloaded on the cars under constant attention of a swarm of civilians and British " Tommies. " 

After going through the preliminaries of reduction in weight, packs were made and troops 
formed for a march to Nouvion — their camp site for the night. This camp was located on a bare 
slope about three miles from Noyelles and was in the form of conical tents thoroughly camouflaged. 
They were again rationed by the British, having received neither equipment nor supplies of their 
own. At that point the shortage of water began to make itself felt, but little did they realize 
how much greater would be the scarcity in days to come. Before taps, troops were formed and 
sectors designated into which they were to deploy in case of air-raids. Fortunately they were 
not subjected to attack and had the first full night's sleep since leaving Brest. 

From Nouvion the regiment marched to its billeting area. Headquarters and the Third Battalion 
being at Canchy a distance of about five miles, while the Second and First were at Domvast 
and Froyelles respectively. The Division, less artillery, eventually reached this area with Head- 
quarters at St. Riquier and under the Commanding General of the Fourth British Army who 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 

assigned to them a "Cadre," meaning corps of British instructors, both officers and N. C. O's. 
Judging from later experiences that billeting area would be called fair, but to green troops straight 
from well-regulated camps in the States, it was a great source of disappointment to take up liv- 
ing quarters in French barns, lofts and chicken-coops. 

The water supply of northern France was dangerous and scanty. A corps of chemists and 
inspectors had to establish the status of all wells and sources of supply before troops could 
use the water. Carts provided for hauling water were handled by men trained for the work and all 
water received a proper sterilizing treatment. Bathing, washing and delousing facilities com- 
mensurate with the fuel and water supply were diligently and ingeniously operated. Cases were 
observed where water supply was so short that it was necessary to save waste water, treat it 
chemically, settle it, and use it over again. 

Some Buffalo Officers, 108th Infantry 

After they had been in the Abbeville area for about ten days and training had been well es- 
tablished it was decided to move the division to the St. Valery area just south of the Somme. 
Pursuant to orders the regiment marched on .June 18th, a distance of some 21 miles. The march 
was extremely difficult owing to the distance and the fact that no opportunity had been given 
to harden the men since leaving home. The weather was hot and, as the wearing of blouses 
was insisted on, there was a tremendous amount of straggling on account of exhaustion and blis- 
tered feet. French roads are very hard and this trip stands out in memory of most of the old 
74th men as by far the most difficult of even their forced marches into the line. 

On Sunday .June 20th they had their first day of rest since leaving the boat a month before. 
A game of ball was arranged with the 3d Canadian Divisional Signal Company. Officers and 
men found many acquaintances in the troops from home and much of the vin sisters (blanc and 
rouge) was consumed to the health of our Canadian cousins — a fine lot of fighting men. 

Owing to the conditions on the Ypres front the 108th was moved on .July 2d, to the vicinity 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 215 

of St. Omar about 25 miles east of Calais. This trip carried them via St. Pol very close to the 
lines and through the first really devastated country they had seen. 

By the night of July 3d the regiment was again thoroughly established. On July 4th a review 
of the 54th Brigade was conducted by the Commanding General P. E. Pierce. The afternoon 
was devoted to band concerts, boxing and wrestling matches, until the spectators were scattered 
by a fleet of Jerry planes. 

At 8 o'clock on the morning of the 5th the regiment marched on Zermezeele. Later events proved 
that this was the first day of its march into Belgium. That night it bivouacked in the vicinity 
of Zermezeele ten miles from the Belgian frontier and due west of Ypres. The 6th was spent in 
resting and washing up. On the 7th the march was continued via Cassel and Steenvoords when 
in the early afternoon the men crossed the Belgian frontier and earned the distinction of being the 
first American troops to enter Belgium. In this, the St. Eloi area, regimental headquarters was in an 
abandoned British aerodrome near Abeele while the 1st, 2d and 3d battalions were at Beauvoords 
Woods, St. Eloi and Trappist Farm respectively. Very few billets were available, making a bivouac 
camp necessary, which was bad owing to the fact that the weather which for nearly two months 
had been ideal for campaigning, suddenly changed to a series of thunder storms with much rain. 

The 2d American Corps, comprising the 27th and 30th Divisions, was attached to the 19th 
Corps of the 2d British Army under General Plumer. About July 7th the Americans found 
themselves established west of Ypres with Division headquarters at Oudezeele and Watou 
respectively. They had been moved into that area in anticipation of a big German push on the 
Ypres sector, the enemy intention supposedly being to break through the British lines to the 
sea, Calais on the Channel being only 40 miles from the Boche lines. 

For defensive purposes the 27th Division was given a certain sector of the East Poperinghe 
Line which was a switch line constructed in support of the Scherpenberg-Dickebush system 
which latter was the main line of defense at that time. Incidentally, a portion of it covered a 
section of the famous Kemmel Hill held by the Hun. 

The 108th sector of the East Poperinghe line was about 6,000 yards front, extending that dis- 
tance south from the southern edge of the town of Poperinghe. The regiment was disposed with 
the 3d battalion on the left and the 2d in the center and the first on the right. The proper dis- 
positions were made by personal reconnaissance of officers from all units. Various headquarters, 
ammunition and supply dumps, signal centers, telephone cables, routes for troops and separate 
routes for transport were all laid out by small carefully conducted parties. Machine gun nests and 
strong points were also planned. During the progress of that work the billeting area was also 
subjected to periodical shelling and air raids both day and night. They were being constantly 
warned by the British of an impending push by the enemy which was expected about July 18th. 
Other units of the division had not yet come up so that the 108th was to hold the position at 
all costs even if they were wiped out in doing so. They were thus in a most critical position. 

The 2d Battalion had sent two companies into the East Poperinghe line on July 19th, occupy- 
ing the line for several days. On July 23d, Company F had two men killed in action by the explo- 
sion of an enemy shell — Corporal Morris Lynchick and Private Grant C. Colton. These were the 
first casualties which the regiment had experienced in action. The battalion joined the regi- 
ment in the Tilques area on July 25th. 

The regiment was in the Tilques training area for eight days during which time intensive 
instruction was given in target practice as well as all the specialties before mentioned. Further 
supplies were issued here so that altogether when the regiment left for the St. Eloi area on 
August 1st it felt ready for any emergency that might arise. 

Front line duty in that sector was almost a typical example of position warfare as developed 
during four years. There was no general advance on the lines but numerous small raids 
and counter attacks, together with artillery counter preparation and gas shelling, which kept 
them very busy. They also did a great deal of trench digging and wire work, the latter along 
the front line which was a series of organized shell holes held thinly by Lewis guns and rifie 

216 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

posts. The casualties* were fairly light during the action but as the men were experiencing the 
front line "baptism of fire" they weighed rather heavily. However, the morale was superb, 
so that after the last unit was relieved and had had a few days rest the men felt like veterans 
and were again ready for duty. 

The lOSth's next move into the line came on August 23d just four days after the last battalion 
was out of the previous action. At this time the 27th Division relieved the British 6th Division 
in the Scherpenberg-Dickebush Lake system. The 53d Brigade was disposed in the front and 
support lines of the divisional sector while the 54th Brigade was in reserve, the 108th Infantry 
being on the left of the reserve sector. Regimental headquarters were then just south of the town 
of Poperinghe. The 1st and 2d battalions were in the vicinity of Ouderloom, backing up the 
106th Infantry, while the 3d battalion was further west near Mandalay Corners. 

For the next few days their duties in the reserve were chiefly maintaining liaison with forward 
units, sending out scouting parties, mapping and reorganizing their position. They were inter- 
mittently subjected to all kinds of artillery fire which was directed by the enemy against battery 
positions and roads. Air activity was considerable and resulted in severe casualties in Company I. 

The strain of enduring shell fire in reserve areas and waiting for something to happen far for- 
ward was very wearing so that when the news came on August 28th that the Boche were evacuat- 
ing Mt. Kemmel and falling back all along the line it was received with much relief. Word was 
received to be ready to move forward at a moment's notice and they remained ready for twelve 
hours but no order came. 

In the meantime the 53d Brigade advanced, suffering severe losses from machine gun nests 
which had been left by the enemy for rear guard action. They continued their advance, however, 
to Vierstraat Ridge which they held until the Division was relieved by the British on August 
31st. They moved out of the line at that time and concentrated around Winnezeele preparatory 
to entraining for a rest area near Doullens. Casualties suffered by the regiment during the cam- 
paign in Belgium were as follows: 

Killed— 10 Wounded~.56 Missing— 4 

It has been well established through official channels that the British were ready to leave 
the Mt. Kemmel front on a moment's notice of attack at the time the two American divisions 
arrived. The big German attack was expected there at that time, and the British officers were frank 
in saying they did not expect to be able to stop it; they expressed an eager willingness to turn the 
job over to the Americans. The latter proposed to let Fritz know he had been to the circus. That 
German attack was never made. Fritz was then in trouble on the Marne. The incident simply went 
to show how shaken was the confidence and how low the morale of the British Army in that sector 
when the Buffalo boys and their associates in the 27th Division entered the Mount Kemmel front. 

The 27th Division was relieved on September 3d and went into reserve at Beauquesne near 
Amiens, preparatory to participating in the drive by which General Foch contemplated breaking 
the German line of supplies between Valenciennes and Metz, and obtaining control of the Sedan- 
Mezieres railroad. In that effort the Americans were affiliated with the British Fourth Army 
under General Rawlinson, and, best of all, were to co-operate with the Australian troops between 
whom and the Americans a very strong attachment had sprung up. The men understood they 
were to make a drive on the famous Hindenburg line where on three distinct occasions the 
British had been repulsed. 

Arriving in Doullens from their rest area the 108th Regiment assembled at a place called 
Tincourt, a small woods located in what was known as the Somme area at a point back of the 
Hindenburg line between Cambria and St. Quentin. 

* The third man of the 108th to meet death was Corporal James Carney, the first Buffalo man of the regiment to be killed. While on duty in 
Belgium on August 13th, a shell struck the point of Corporal Carney's gun, filling him with shrapnel. He died instantly. Private Fred Hall of 
Batavia was badly wounded by the same shell. Another ButTalo man of the 108th to give his life while the regiment was in the Dickebush sector 
was Corporal W. H. Davidson. He had just been selected as a Gas N. C. O. and had been up in the front line for instruction. Coming out of the 
line he received a bullet through the chest and was dead when picked up by first aid men. 

While the regiment was still in Belgium, in the reserve line, a Hun night Iiombing plane dropped 'an egg* on a billet and wounded thirteen 
members of I Company. Sergeant Souter was killed instantly; Charles W. Hoadley, a Bradford boy was also killed, and Corporal Wagner severely 
wounded. — Captain E. G. Ziegler. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 217 


IT will be recalled that General Pershing in concluding his report on the breaking of the German 
Marne salient said, "the 77th Division took up a position on the Vesle. " That statement 
is interesting, and important perhaps, only in that it was the official announcement of the 
arrival of the first National Army division on the fighting front. First in France, first to hold a 
front line position, and now, first among the selective service men to enter the battle line is some- 
thing of a distinction which that Division of Buffalo boys and their comrades from other sections 
of the State will long enjoy. 

Beginning on the night of August 1st the 37th Division, composed of former Ohio national 
guardsmen, moved up to the Baccarat front to relieve the 77th Division. When the 77th had 
relieved the 42d at Baccarat it was green, frightfully green; American military men knew it, 
the 77th knew it, and the Germans knew it. It was a much improved outfit, however, when the 
Ohio men came up for front line training, and the 77th was withdrawn for front line action. But 
five Buffalo boys, so far as now known, were in the Ohio Division which moved up to that Lor- 
raine sector on August First. One was Charles Freuh, who had been rejected by the doctors in 
Buffalo, but who persistently sought enlistment and finally was accepted by the physicians in 
Cleveland, enlisting in the " Cleveland Greys;" another was Victor Sweeney, of 95 Eastwood 
Place, a student of Case College in Cleveland who enlisted in the Ohio National Guard at the 
outbreak of the war; Irving H. Johnson, 147th Infantry and two Greek boys, William Huroodas, 
148th Infantry, and Speur Sardales, 147th Infantry. Two of these boys were severely injured 
before the close of the war, the first named passing through a tragic experience. 

When the 37th Division arrived at Baccarat and the 77th was leaving, the 302d Engineers 
were the first to move out. They proceeded by march to the neighborhood of Bayon, where 
they were joined by the artillery. The infantry hiked to Charmes. On August 6th they entrained 
but were unaware of their destination. Their train ride lasted for two days and they soon became 
aware of the fact that they were going into the neighborhood of real battle. The Engineers and 
the Artillery detrained at Coulommieres. Here they found busses waiting. They were carried 
through the ruin and wreckage of the Marne battlefield over which the Americans had just driven 
the retreating Huns. Death stared at them from every ditch. Snipers, dead in their lofty tree- 
top posts, swung in the wind; destroyed buildings, the scattered bodies of animals, torn with 
shells, all gave them a never-to-be-forgotten introduction to a real battle area. The bus ride 
carried them through Chateau Thierry and Fere-en-Tardenois to Nesle Wood, near Seringes. 
They joined the infantry at Fere-en-Tardenois, and then relieved the tired and battle-worn 4th 
American and 52d French divisions. The relief was effected on the night of August 11th, in the 
"Hell-Hole Valley of the Vesle," where the advance in the second battle of the Marne had been 

The 77th was given no time to be shown around and get acquainted with its new premises; the 
old tenants pulled out and the new moved in. The 28th Pennsylvania guardsmen had relieved 
the 32d Division on the right of the 77th, and a French Division was on the left. Opposing the 
77th were the German 17th, 39th and 216th Divisions and the Fourth Guard Division. While 
the Germans had been pushed out of the Marne salient, nothing was wrong with their morale at 
that time, and military men, generally, conceded the Germans had not given way much. The 
moral effect at home of their failure to go through was the most serious blow they had suffered. 
The worst was yet to come. 

The entire 77th Division was in position by the 17th of August, the artillery being the last 
to come up, and for three weeks stood a rather severe siege. They found themselves buried in 
the hottest kind of a hole. The Engineers, 302d Regiment, worked heroically night after night 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 219 

repairing the bridges over the Vesle under heavy shell and machine gun fire. They constructed 
wire defenses for their positions, constructed many artillery and foot bridges, repaired and cam- 
ouflaged roads. Here the first Buffalo man in the 302d Engineers to die, Private Wallace Parmenter, 
was killed while at work on a bridge. 

Two other Buffalo boys of the 302d Engineers were killed at that point, "It was a bright 
Sunday morning about 8 o'clock, when 'Fritz' started to shell us, "said William Sweetland of 
Angola. " It was breakfast time and some of those who had been out on detail the night before 
had not yet got up. I was just going down with my mess kit when I heard a shell coming. I 
flopped flat on the ground for I could tell by the sound it was going to land pretty close. They 
have the sound of a sky rocket when they 'go off.' It landed and threw dirt all over us. The 
second landed right in front of my comrade's bunk. Then I heard the cry for first aid. 

"When the smoke cleared away three were dead and two of them were Buffalo boys, George 
Kreutzer and Gerald Sabin. The shell had killed three and wounded four. Our chaplain could 
not get there that day and I volunteered to take his place. I held a short service and buried 
my friends that afternoon." 

Roswell Park, a first lieutenant in the 305th Infantry, of this Division was put out of the war 
at the time his regiment moved up on the Vesle. He was gassed and shell-shocked on August 
14th, and was never returned to his company. Lieutenant Park, in a letter prior to that time, 
shows how small this old world is anyway. It is injected here rather abruptly, but necessarily, 
as Park here passes out of the war picture: 

"The middle of June saw me in Paris for eight days where I was fortunate to meet Roscoe 
R. Mitchell, Arnold Watson, James How, William Meadows and C. W. Goodyear who had just 
landed for Red Cross work. Also met Mrs. John Knox Freeman who was working with the Ser- 
bian Mission of the American Red Cross and who was later decorated by the Serbian Govern- 
ment. Captain Davis T. Dunbar arrived in Paris while I was there, having just been through 
the famous fight at Belleau Wood. I also met Captain (later Major) John Satterfield. While 
in the field hospital near Fere-en-Tardenois I met up with a Buffalo operating team composed 
of Captain (later Major) Joseph P. Brennen and First Lieutenants M'Dowell and Fairbanks. 
Also met ' Bill ' Emerick of the Courier, and it was good to see them. " 

It was the dogdays of Summer when the Division arrived on the Vesle, and the 77th were 
super-heated with all the Germans had to send over. As one Buffalo boy put it "the smaller 
guns were sending over quart cans of dynamite and the larger ones cook-stoves. 

"Baccarat," he said, "was only a boxing match, but the Vesle, that was a sure-enough fight." 

The Vesle River is only about thirty feet wide at that point, and eight or ten feet in depth 
at its deepest point. It has high, straight banks, however, and steep ridges on each side. The 
Germans held the north bank, while the front of the 77th Division ran parallel with the southern, 
one end touching at Mont Notre Dame and extending east in the direction of Fismes. The artil- 
lery was behind Hill 210. For three weeks the 77th held that position under artillery fire, suffer- 
ing many casualties. German patrols crossed the river at frequent intervals and hand-to-hand 
combats were numerous. 

The 77th, however, was no longer a "green" Division, but was rapidly rounding into a high- 
class combat organization. Still, it had a severe lesson yet to learn. 

That lesson was taught on the Vesle ! 

The Division leaders, growing restless under the severe strain of simply holding without the 
incentive of making an advance, decided to capture Bazoches. The 306th Infantry was selected 
for the job, and the tactical maneuvers were all worked out to perfection. Bazoches rested in 
a deep pocket on the German side of the Vesle. Hills stretched back from it on three sides. The 
attack started at 4 .15 A. M. August 27th and at daylight one platoon signaled "objective reached ". 
Then the Germans began to bomb that platoon on the front and both flanks from their concealed 
positions on the hills. At 5.25 A. M. the platoon was retiring, the Lieutenant in charge and four 
men alone getting back. At 10 o'clock, Captain Bull, who was in charge of the raid, decided to 

220 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

withdraw from the village. The Division had paid a big price for success and failure, but it had 
a lesson, which in the short time it had to prepare for the greater struggle to follow, it could 
probably have acquired in no other way. 

Among those who made the trip across the Vesle into Bazoches on August 27th were Edward 
P. Morrisey, Arthur Georger, Frank Shultz and about five others of the 302d Engineers. Mor- 
risey is a son of Battalion Chief Morrisey of the Buffalo Fire Department. With his companion 
Shultz he was cut off from the infantry platoon in the confusion which followed the opening up 
of the German guns on the hills. Seeing that the Germans again had possession of the town, 
Morrisey and Shultz picked up Frank DeBlase, a wounded infantryman, and crawled over to 
an immense pile of charcoal near the railroad track. They had some food with them. But it did 
not last long during their self-imprisoned stay. Each night Morrisey would crawl out from their 
hiding place on a foraging expedition. They intended to fight their way to the river but the 
wounded man, at the time they found him, was in no shape for a hurried departure. Morrisey 
determined not to leave without him, though it is probable the two engineers could have made 
their way back at night through the German lines. Finally, after five days of waiting and with 
hunger coming on, the infantryman having recovered his strength somewhat, the three men left 
their hiding place and crawled toward the German sentry. The night was very dark. When 
they reached the line, they could see two German machine gunners walking back and forth. 
Morrisey killed the two gunners with a hand grenade, made a dash for the river, swam across, 
bringing the wounded infantryman safely back into the American lines. For his courage and 
valor the Buffalo boy was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross, and promoted to the post 
of sergeant. 

On the same night John J. Kelly and John Dwyer of Company E distinguished themselves. 
Lieutenant Meadman, of their company, had been shot down near the bank of the river. Dwyer 
and Kelly saw him fall and hurried to his side. While exposed to machine gun and shell fire 
they carried the injured Lieutenant to headquarters company, but he was dead when they arrived. 
For their heroic act they received official citation. 

In the party which left with Morrisey for the trip across the river on the eventful night of the 
26th, were Arthur Georger and John Bastedo of Buffalo and some others of C Company. Corporal 
Thomas F. Reilly was in charge of the detachment. The little group had a difficult time fighting 
their way out of the trap into which they had been sent, but they showed an heroic front, and 
Reilly, with one or two others returned. Young Georger, the popular son of a Genesee Street 
merchant, was killed while protecting the retreat of the detachment. When Shultz and Mor- 
risey finally came through, it was thought that possibly Georger was hiding somewhere in the 
town, but the retreat of the Germans and the advance of the Americans two weeks later showed 
that Georger had gone down with his rifle in his hand facing the enemy. Several German bodies 
near the place where Georger was found would indicate that he had collected full toll for the 
sacrifice he made. Georger was recognized by his tag and gas mask on which he had written 
his name. 

Another Buffalo boy, Simon H. Risman, Company D, 307th Infantry was wounded the same 
night but not in that sortie. 

Shortly after the Bazoches episode, Major General George B. Duncan was relieved from the 
command of the 77th, being replaced by Major General Robert Alexander. The two incidents, 
perhaps, were in no way identical or related, but the change came at a time when the 77th was 
"finding itself." From then on, the 77th was a full-fledged combat division of the finest fighting 
temper and efficiency, equipped for the great task it was about to perform in the drive through 
the Argonne Forest. 

On September 2d the Germans began to pull out of their position on the Vesle. The First 
American Army had been formed, and it was known the Americans were to start a major offen- 
sive. Where it was going to hit, and when, were the unknown factors. Undoubtedly the Germans 
decided to pull back to a more advantageous point than they then held on the Vesle, retiring to 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 221 

the Aisne. The 77th followed them rapidly, however, pressing the retreating Boche, and fight- 
ing a successful engagement with the rear guard detachments at Haute Maisons on September 
3d. The 77th followed for seven and a half miles, causing appreciable loss to the German forces. 

When the Boche fell back, details of the engineers accompanied the advance infantry, while 
the remainder worked immediately behind repairing roads, constructing more bridges across the 
Vesle, de-gassing the numerous caves and rendering harmless the enemy's traps and mines. 

The 77th Division was relieved by an Italian Division on September 15th. The units marched 
back to the Coulonges-Villers-Agron-Aquizy area. Two days later they again embussed for a 
long ride to Verrieres, preparatory to taking their place in the Argonne offensive. 

Many members of the Division had been killed, wounded or gassed in the "Hell-Hole Valley 
of the Vesle." 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 223 


THE St. Mihiel attack after its crashing artillery start became in the judgment of many a 
promenade. It consisted mostly of preparation and barrage, and yet, returned soldiers have 
said they experienced rough going at St. Mihiel. Hoping to make it a surprise attack. General 
Pershing observed the strictest secrecy, concerning his plans, the place and time of attack. Rain 
fell continuously for several days prior to September 11th, but on that day the skies cleared and 
from enemy aeroplanes German observers had their eyes filled with a fascinating picture of what 
was coming to them. American soldiers and artillery were .massed on three sides of the salient. 
There are those who believe the German High Command had decided not to make a stand in 
that salient, which they held so successfully for three years against every sort of attack. Metz 
was a much more substantial ground from which to make a resistance. If they had not reached 
that decision before the barrage, they arrived at it soon after the American barrage began. 

Buffalo's big contingent, represented in the 78th Division, had been selected to take part in 
the St. Mihiel attack. They opened in support of the Second Division. The 42d, numbering many 
Buffalo men in its ranks, was in the line and the 153d Artillery Brigade (78th Division) with farmer 
boys and city chaps from this end of the State well represented, had taken up a position in sup- 
port of the 90th Division. The Second Division, now numbering upward of 300 boys from 
Buffalo and surrounding towns in the Marine regiments, was in line by the side of the 90th. In 
addition to those two divisions, the 82d and the 5th divisions* were also in the First Corps, under 
the command of Major General Hunter Liggett. The right of this corps rested on Pont-a-Mousson, 
and the left joined the Third American Corps, containing the 89th, 42d and First divisions. 
Their line extended to Xivray, and they were to swing in towards Vigneulles for the initial assault. 
The Second Colonial French Corps was next in line, and then came the Fifth American Corps. 
The 78th Division, together with the Third Division, was in reserve for the First Corps. The 
35th and 91st were also in reserve and the 80th and 33d were available. 

The 106th Field Artillery and the 102d Trench Mortar Battery of Buffalo were co-operating 
with the 33d, and had moved up on September 11th. but did not get into the fighting until the 
close of the drive. 

When the German aviators hovered over the American lines on that clear September day, the 
11th, they saw 1700 guns set for a barrage; ammunition had been drawn up in vast quantitiesf 
and the American Army was ready to send across the heaviest and mightiest barrage of the war. 

The night of September 11-12 was dark— impenetrably dark— and a soul-seeking rain was fall- 
ing. At 7 o'clock the men were ordered forward and through the dismal night they crowded the 
roads, each seeking his appointed place, the commanders anxiously groping for the right turn in the 
road. By 12 o'clock all units were in their preliminary positions. The artillery opened the pre- 
paratory firing at 1 o'clock; at 3 A. M. the heavy barrage opened. To the infantrymen it looked 
as though they were set in one vast circle of flashing skies and crashing thunder. So well lighted 

♦"The 9th Infantry Brigade of the 5th Division regular army, consists of the 60th and 61st regiments of infantry, and the 14th Machine Gun 
Battalion. In these three units a large portion of the personnel are boys from Buffalo, Lockport, Niagara Falls, and other neighboring towns. 

Last February. 1,500 or more men were transferred from the 78th Division, then at Camp Dix to the 6th Infantry Brigade at Camp Green. 
N. C. All these men left their homes in the drafts of September, October and November, 1917. 

The 5th Division left the United States April 16, 1918, arriving at Brest, France, April 28th. After arrival we were given three weeks of mten- 
aive training, when the division was inspected bv General Pershing, and designated as a shock division. 

In the Saint Mihiel offensive the division gained fame, going over the top at 5 A. M., September 12th, taking a number of towns and many 
prisoners. The division was cited in general orders for its great work. We came out of the Saint Mihiel sector about September 17th, for a brief 
rest and training. — Letter from Private J. F. Kersten, Buffalo. 6Ist Infantry, Fifth Division." 

t " I never shall forget the night the big push started at Saint Mihiel. It was the first big American drive that was pulled olT by an all-Ameri- 
can army. Two of us were out with a load of powder charges and we couldn't find the place where it was supposed to be taken. It was as dark 
as pitch and raining like blazes. Men were swarming up to the trenches. They went over the top at 5 o'clock that morning. We finally unloaded 
the ammunition where it was wanted. 

"The dugouts were filled with artillerymen who were resting up for the big fracas. The big guns were to start at 1 o clock and we were warned 
to get our trucks off the road before that time. We finally got started back, but our truck slid into a ditch. We were out of gas. Suddenly the 
guns started all together. It was the most fearful noise I have ever heard. The earth seemed to shake. The next afternoon the German prisoners 
were brought in. in groups of 100 or more. They totaled thousands. Our division, the 78th was given great credit in this drive. — Letter from 
Private William Lawson. 303d A. T. {employe Buffalo News). 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 225 

was the field from the blazing powder that they could now easily find their lines. The 1700 guns 
belched away and the earth rocked. There was no answering shot from the Germans, and the 
American troops at 5 A. M. walked quietly down behind their barrage, across No Man's Land 
for a considerable distance, before they met even the slightest resistance. General Pershing in 
his report on the battle says : 

"After four hours' artillery preparation, the seven American divisions in the front line advanced 
at 5 A. M., on September 12th, assisted by a limited number of tanks manned partly by Amer- 
icans and partly by the French. These divisions, accompanied by gi-oups of wire cutters and 
others armed with bangalore torpedoes, went through the successive bands of barbed wire that 
protected the enemy's front line and support trenches, in irresistible waves on schedule time, 
breaking down all defense of an enemy demoralized by the great volume of our artillery fire 
and our sudden approach out of the fog. 

"Our First Corps advanced to Thiacourt, while our Fourth Corps curved back to the south- 
west through Nonsard. The second Colonial French Corps made the slight advance required of 
it on very difficult ground, and the Fifth Corps took its three ridges and repulsed a counter attack. 
A rapid march brought reserve regiments of a Division of the Fifth Corps into Vigneulles in the 
early morning, where it linked up with patrols of our Fourth Corps, closing the salient and form- 
ing a new line west of Thiacourt to Vigneulles and beyond Fresnes-en-Woevre. At the cost of 
only 7,000 casualties, mostly light, we had taken 16,000 prisoners and 443 guns, a great quantity 
of material, released the inhabitants of many villages from enemy domination, and established 
our lines in a position to threaten Metz. This signal success of the American First Army in its 
first offensive was of prime importance. The Allies found they had a formidable army to aid 
them, and the enemy learned finally that he had one to reckon with." 

The enemy left the point of the salient under the heavy barrage and quickly sought healthier 
lines in the rear. Many got through, but the Americans, forcing in from both sides, cut them off 
by the hundreds, capturing an immense number of men and vast quantities of supplies. The First 
Division alone, attacking in the Beaumont sector, advanced 14 kilometers in 19 hours, captured 
five officers, including a major, 1190 men, 30 guns of 77 and 150mm, 50 machine guns, 1 anti- 
tank gun, 100 rifles, large quantities of ammunition and three narrow gauge locomotives. Other 
Divisions had like bags. In the haul made by the 42d Division, in addition to wagonloads of vege- 
tables, was a mail box filled with letters from German soldiers to their folk back home. In all 
those letters ran the same story of a weakening morale, and these were a source of encourage- 
ment to the American leaders. The following missives are typical of them all : 

From Grenadier P. Langner, 6th Grenadier Regiment. September 11, 1918. 

" Dear Joseph. As I liave already told you, we have been here in a quiet position since August 21st. This 

would be a good place to wait for peace, but, of course, dear friend, you know that the 10th Infantry Division cannot 
bear anything quiet. Of course, our artillery had to start again to increase its activity. Besides that every evening 
strong patrols are sent out to bring in prisoners but they are always driven off by the Americans. The talk around 
here was that Schangel (perhaps a nickname for the Allies) wanted to attack here from the 14th to the 15th, but no 
one can depend on that rumor. We are only five kilometers from your old position, measuring as the crow flies. 
(Combres Heights.) 

"We are in the Sonnard Woods. A short time ago I saw Fr. Joseph and he said that we would not stay here long. 
I hope we do not go into our old haunts again where we made the first offensives for the Englishman is giving us 
some heavy licks up there. He has won back almost all the territory that we won then. Kuhnert P. wrote that he 
was already at Ham. He wrote me lately everything was falling up there. I am for the present time in reserve and 
from here I go for ten days to the S. O. S " 

The Americans were beginning to loom large on the German horizon even before the St. Mihiel 
offensive according to this letter: 

"From Heinrich Kirschke, 47th Infantry. "Pannes (six), September 11, 1918. 

" When will that time come again that we can live together again so comfortably in Berlin? It looks very 

sad for our beautiful Germany. Who knows whether the Americans will not even yet break through? This morning 
at 3 o'clock we were again alerted and thought the Americans were going to attack, but nothing as yet. However, 
we captured a couple of prisoners who said that they would be in Germany in eight days. This place is not far from 

226 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

Alsace Lorraine where Metz is soon reached. We few fellows cannot hold up this superior might and must all go 
helplessly into captivity and, of course, most of the prisoners are murdered. But then we have to be satisfied with 
our fate whatever happens. I shouldn't like at all to be taken prisoner for one is then entirely cut off from the dear 
home. Still worse than that is to be severely wounded. Better dead than that. Well, I have always had luck up to 
now and guess I'll get through somehow. 

"According to all appearances we are approaching turbulent days. We are constantly alerted and it is feared that 
the Americans are going to attack in this sector. They are said to have assembled tremendous numbers of tanks 
and troops on the other side. In that case we are lost. But everything in our front line is balled up, so don't be 
surprised if you don't hear from me for several weeks. I am finally convinced that I couldn't be any worse off over 
there than I am here " 

The salient was reduced one-half by the first day's effort, and, while the opposition grew as 
the American Army advanced, the lines of the salient were quickly straightened out. 

Subsequent to this operation a German military report on the American troops of which the 
following is a verbatim extract, came into the possession of the First Army Corps: 

"At least nine American divisions took part under the command of General Pershing. Of these nine divisions 
there were three — the 1st, 2d and 42d — first-class attacking divisions: two, the 4th and the 26th, good fighting 
divisions which had already shown their work in other large attacks. The attack was preceded by a f qui -hour 
artillery preparation, in addition to a short trench mortar bombardment. The shooting of the batteries was very 
good, not only on the front trenches but also on all the communications and rear areas. The initial attack was 
carried out according to schedules, but the successive waves showed great inaptitude in following up the advance. 
Officers as well as men did not understand how to make use of the terrain. Instead of seeking protection when they 
encountered opposition they merely fell back. To crawl backward or forward on the ground, or to advance in quick 
jumps, does not seem to be understood by the Americans. They remain lying on the ground for the time being 
and then just stand up again and try to advance. Neither in mass formation nor individually do the Americans 
know how to conduct themselves in an attack. They are unquestionably brave. They are evidently afraid of being 
captured. When capture impends, however, They Fight to the Last and Do Not Put Up Their Hands. 

"The Americans showed themselves skilled in the use of machine guns. In defense they are very tenacious. The 
conduct of the infantry seems to show a lack of military training. The artillery preparation was well carried out. 

"The leadership was unskilled and awkward. The enemy apparently has many officers at his disposal, but the 
elements of leadership are lacking. Their embarrassment was unmistakable after obtaining their initial success. 
They remained helpless on their new line and were unable to take full advantage of their victory. The French, in 
the same position, would have been much more dangerous. After the infantry had reached its objective the higher 
command failed. It was therefore possible for the army detachment (the Germans), under the most difficult con- 
ditions, to extricate itself from its precarious situation in one night. The American is very amateurish, and there- 
fore not to be feared in a large attack." 

On September 14th the 78th Division was moved up on the St. Mihiel front and saw con- 
tinuous action from then until October 9th. They took the towns of Jaulny and Rimicourt. 
Captain Samuel H. Piatt, Company E, 309th Infantry, of Buffalo, was killed on the second day 
of the drive. Private Henry C. Stief describing his death says: 

"Captain Piatt had been advanced to the rank of Major, his commission arriving at Regi- 
mental Headquarters a short time after his death. 

"It was the second day of the St. Mihiel Drive. Several of our officers were gathered in the 
post command, or officers' hut, mapping out the work and consulting about the coming fighting. 
Just then, whether accidentally or otherwise, the German artillery made a direct hit. A heavy 
shell dropped squarely in the quarters killing three captains and one lieutenant and wounding 
two lieutenants. Captain Piatt was one of the men killed. His death was a great shock to us 
Buffalo boys and to others who had grown to love him as a leader. " 

In the St. Mihiel engagement Lieutenant John A. Bachman, 248 Scheule Avenue, put his 
name on the scroll of honor by a diligent effort to protect his men during a heavy barrage. He 
gave his life for his men and his country and won the Distinguished Service Cross, being partic- 
ularly commended in the following citation : 

"Second Lieutenant John A. Bachman (deceased) 308th Machine Gun Battalion. For extraordinary heroism near Jaulny, France, on Sep- 
tember 26, 1918. During an early morning raid Lieutenant Bachman attempted to place two guns in position when the enemy opened a terrific 
barrage. He was ordered to shelter on the slope of the hill and after his men had taken refuge there he went back to determine whether all of 
his men had reached safety. In passing through the barrage he was struck by a shell and instantly killed." 

Another Buffalo boy who fell while gallantly discharging his duty in the St. Mihiel attack was 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 227 

Lieutenant Allan Wilkins Douglass, 113th F. A., 30th Division. At the time war was declared 
young Douglass was a sophomore at Yale, and, while the news of America's entrance into the 
war flashed over the wires, Douglass, like many other American boys, had his application for 
military service on the way to army headquarters. He was assigned in May to the first officers ' 
training camp at Madison Barracks. Late that year he received his commission; was married 
in March, 1918, prior to his departure for overseas. While advancing with his battery on Sep- 
tember 12th he met his death. A division citation commends Lieutenant Douglass for his meri- 
torious service as follows: 

"First Lieutenant Allan W. Douglass, Deceased. Battery E., 113th Field Artillery. During the engagement near LiMEY, 12th September. 1918, 
after being struck by a shell splinter he continued the work of removing the dead and wounded horses and moving the carriages to a place of 
safety. Later he was again struck by a shell and killed while in the performance of his duty. His courage and utter disregard for personal safety 
inspired the men of his section to continue their work successfully." 

The 78th Division suffered many losses after relieving the 2d Division during the latter part 
of the St. Mihiel Drive. Steve Yaschuk of G Company, 311th Infantry, 141 Selkirk Street, was 
hit in the neck by a piece of shrapnel, killing him instantly. His company was then holding the 
front line, and Yaschuk was out on a wiring party at the time he was hit. He was buried in a 
churchyard at Vieville-en-Haye, France. 

During the general attack on September 26th, .John F. Burke of B Company, 311th Infan- 
try, whose brother lived at 2000 Seneca Street was wounded by shrapnel in the arm, back 
and hips. He was evacuated to Hospital No. 12, but died from his wounds on the following 

Sergeant Major Louis Blase, Headquarters Company, 309th Infantry, of 48 Welmont Place 
was hit early on the morning of September 17th at the time Captain Piatt was killed. Head- 
quarters of the regiment was occupied by various oflScers and men, including Sergeant Blase, 
when it was hit by a high explosive shell. Every man in the building was more or less severely 
injured. Sergeant Blase died before first aid could be administered. 

Norbert B. Dorscheid, Private, 311th Machine Gun Company, was conveying a message from 
platoon position in front line on the St. Mihiel sector to Headquarters when an enemy shell 
exploded near him, wounding him fatally. He died while at the first aid station. 

John V. Earl, 162 16th Street, Buffalo, Private in M Company, 310th Infantry, while return- 
ing to Brigade Reserve was struck by a high explosive shell on September 28th and killed instantly. 
This happened on a road between Thiacourt and Jaulny. Rocco Frazzoli, a Private in Company 
A, 310th Infantry had been killed instantly by a high explosive shell near the same point just 
as his Company was going into action two days before. 

Edward W. Kindt, 311th Infantry, B Company, whose mother resided at 257 Howard Street, 
was killed on September 24th at Bois St. Claude by a direct hit of an enemy shell while on out- 
post duty. He was buried by his comrades where he fell. Christ .1. Klaiber, Corporal, Company 
H, 311th Infantry, 456 Jefferson Street, was killed on September 21st while on patrol duty, 
attacking a German machine gun nest. Just as he pulled out from a clump of brush and led his 
automatic rifle squad into action he was struck in the stomach by a machine gun bullet and 
died almost instantly. Sergeant John Lundquist also of H Company, said that he never saw 
anyone display greater courage than Corporal Klaiber, in cleaning out machine gun nests that 
day, until, finally, he was called upon to make the supreme sacrifice. Another Buffalo boy to 
die that day was Alexander Kuczkowski, a Private in B Company, 311th Infantry, 70 Woltz 
Avenue. He received a bad wound from shrapnel in chest and right side during the general advance 
and died in Evacuation Hospital No. 12 on the following day. 

Private H. J. Laurencell, 342 South Park Avenue, Company B, 311th Infantry, was killed by 
shell fire on the 24th, being the victim of a direct hit on outpost duty. Boleslau Makowiecki, 
Private in B Company, 311th Infantry, 205 Weimar Street, was killed by shell fire same day. 
Daniel J. Murray, G Company, 311th Infantry, 255 Fulton Street, was killed by shell fire during 
the afternoon attack. Private Markey, who was beside him stated that a shell exploded near 

228 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

them and a piece of shrapnel hit Murray on the right side of the head. His death was immediate. 
Jacob C. Moritz, Private, Company M, 311th Infantry, was killed a few days prior to that by 
the accidental discharge of a hand grenade. Sergeant Arthur Nelson of G Company, 309th Infan- 
try, was killed by shell fire the same day that Moritz was killed. 

Martin Saar, Private, Company B, 308th Machine Gun Battalion, was killed by shrapnel on 
September 25th at about 5.10 A. M. near Jaulny. Saar was asleep in his shelter after being relieved 
from his gun position, when a shell exploded in his immediate vicinity, killing him instantly. 

On September 26th the Germans accounted for a good many Buffalo boys of the 78th Divi- 
sion, for after relieving the Second, the enemy counter-attacked severely. During one of these 
counter-attacks Private Walter Schultz, B Company, 311th Infantry was hit several times. He 
was dead when first aid reached him. Leo Schweitzer of Headquarters Company, 311th Infantry 
received wounds from which he died while engaged in fixing an abandoned German dugout. 
•Just a small piece of shrapnel entered Schweitzer's groin, but it severed an artery and he bled to 
death within ten minutes. He was hit about 4 o'clock in the afternoon. 

On September 24th, John C. Weidman, 364 Watson Street was on his way to outpost duty 
when he was hit by a shell, killing him instantly. Another Buffalo boy, Henry J. Wolf, who 
was well known in his locality, 440 Humboldt Parkway, was killed in the St. Mihiel sector. He 
had been out repairing telephone lines all day and part of the previous night and he returned to 
his station to get a little sleep. About 4 A. M. the enemy laid down a heavy barrage on the front 
area. Private Heider who accompanied Wolf heard a gas alarm and they put on their masks 
and laid down again. They had scarcely reached the ground when a large shell struck a tree 
directly above their dugout. As soon as Private Heider removed his mask when the all-clear 
alarm had been given he turned to Wolf and found that he had been hit in the neck by a piece 
of shrapnel which killed him instantly. He was buried on September 22d in Thiacourt Cemetery 
by Chaplains King and Gearhart. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 229 



A s early as July, 1917, General Pershing had decided that the first offensive of the American 
/\ Army would be against the St. Mihiel salient. At that time, however, he anticipated hav- 
-^ -*- ing an American sector much earlier than was finally the case. But in any event it can 
readily be seen that the St. Mihiel attack was a well-thought out operation. A few days before 
the drive, according to Major Palmer of Pershing's Staff, Marshal Foch came down to see General 
Pershing and they had a talk. Palmer says the upshot of this was that before Pershing had even 
struck at St. Mihiel he began preparing for the Argonne battle. Indeed, that talk resulted in 
the most daring campaign of the whole war, and the decisive one of the war. The original idea 
of the St. Mihiel drive was to move clear to Etain and Mars-la-Tour, seriously threatening Metz. 
Pershing kept up that impression, and it will be recalled, said Palmer, that Hindenburg went to 
Metz in person to look after the fortifications. 

Meanwhile Marshal Foch had decided to develop the whole line of attack from Flanders to 
the Meuse, aiming by a system of alternate blows in rapid succession, to confuse Ludendorff's 
disposition of his reserves, to break through the old fortifications at every point, and to force 
future operations in the open. American divisions helped to break the line northwest of Soissons, 
and that east of Rheims. "Marshal Foch seemed to think well of us as hne breakers." 

According to Major Palmer, no one had ever conceived of any offensive from the Meuse River 
to the Argonne Forest. It was striking straight at the German line of communication. But the 
natural defenses back of the first line enemy intrenchments were indescribably difficult. Reading 
the reports of the time, it looked as though we went into that battle well prepared. "As a matter 
of fact" continues Palmer "the American attack appeared to be defying all the rules and prec- 
edents which war on the Western Front had established. In order to make sure of a surprise 
Pershing avoided many details of preparation which hitherto had been considered essential. It 
was the kind of manoeuver which makes or breaks commanders. He dared all for immediate 
victory instead of waiting all Winter on the supplies and the training which he needed for a Spring 

Concluding his comments in a satisfied way, though clearly showing the looseness of that opera- 
tion, which in itself accounted for many hves needlessly sacrificed, Major Palmer said: "We 
sent in divisions which had never been under fire before, divisions which had never operated with 
their artillery brigades, divisions short of transport. We wore down forty German divisions. 
Ludendorff brought more and more reserves of artillery and machine guns against us, but we 
kept at it — kept hammering. It was the Somme and Passchendaele over again, with the hope of 
victory the wine to exhausted officers and men. Drive, drive, drive — with the Germans slowly 
weakening. I had seen many battles — but nothing like this. We captured one lot of three hun- 
dred prisoners in which every man was a machine-gunner. Proportionate to prisoners we took 
three times as many guns as the Allies — which showed how the Germans were pressing their guns 
to the front in the Argonne battle. 

"At intervals between October 1st and November 11th we had as many troops in the front line 
as the British and French together. We were holding up our end — even our green divisions were. 

"On November 11th we had only two fresh divisions in reserve, and the French had fourteen 
and the British seven, as I remember. We had offered ourselves without stint. Individuals did 
not count. Nothing counted but victory." 

The Meuse-Argonne offensive which quickly followed St. Mihiel was the solar-plexus blow of 
the war. Though Major Palmer has said enough to show the incompleteness of the American 
preparation, the fact that it concluded in a decisive victory virtually ending the war, perhaps 
should be sufficient for the arm-chair critic. 

230 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

The all-important hinge of the Allied drive was assigned to the United States Army in the 
American sector, they having been given the task of breaking the German lines of communication 
through Mezieres and Sedan. Simultaneously with the swing through the Argonne the Second 
Division with the French were to attack Blanc Mont drawing the Boche forces away from St. 
Quentin, while co-operating with the British, the American 27th and 30th Divisions were to 
strike the Hindenburg Line, between Cambrai and St. Quentin, at a supposedly invulnerable 
point. The 27th Division had been withdrawn from the Mt. Kemmel sector a short time before 
in preparation for the attack conditional upon the success of the St. Mihiel drive, complete as 
the Allied High Command hoped it to become, and as it subsequently proved to be. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 231 



EARLY in 1899 a young Lieutenant, not long out of West Point, came to Fort Porter as a 
member of the 13th Infantry, and left Buffalo with that regiment for the Philippines. 
That young man was Lieutenant Dennis E. Nolan, a graduate of West Point in 1896, who 
had served through the Spanish-American war as aide-de-camp to General Miles, 1st Infantry, 
U. S. Regulars. Lieutenant Nolan's folks then lived in Akron, and the young officer was a product 
of the high school of that town. He had entered into competition for a cadetship at West Point, 
stood highest among the school boy competitors and was named by the congressman of his dis- 
trict to the first vacancy at the military academy, which occurred in 1892. 

When America entered the World War in 1917, General Pershing found Major Dennis E. Nolan 
serving in the War Department at Washington. He had gone to the Philippines a Lieutenant 
in the 13th Infantry and came out of there a Major in the 11th Cavalry. He had served later 
as an instructor at West Point, and in 1910 was returned to the Philippines as Director of the 
District of Luzon and came back in 1915. When General Pershing received his order to go abroad. 
Major Nolan was occupying uneasily a War Department chair. 

Picking out a small staff of officers, the American Commander left for overseas, arriving in 
France in June, 1917. A well organized staff, in the opinion of General Pershing, through which 
the commander could exercise his functions was essential to a successful modern army. And, 
unquestionably, the American Army about to go overseas had to be primarily a successful army, 
and necessarily, a modern army. A new modernized railroad engine, a completely equipped 
tender, and splendid new coaches, no matter how thorough their manufacture and how efficient 
their construction, would be useless for practical purposes unless hitched together by a proper 
coupling. Accordingly, it is well estabhshed that no matter how capable divisions, regiments 
and companies might be, success for the army would not be possible without thorough co-ordina- 
tion. Hence, the General Staff. 

Up to that time, however, the American Army had possessed no General Staff broadly con- 
structed and trained for war. The building of this Army, therefore, had to begin at the top. 
The staff when completed had the task of carrying out the policy of the Army, directing the 
details of administration, supply, preparation and operations of the Army as a whole, with all 
special branches and bureaus subject to its control. General Pershing obtained complete informa- 
tion as to the organization of the veteran French staff, and also reviewed the experience of the 
British who had similarly formed an organization to meet the demands of their enlarged and 
newly constructed army. The American Commander says in his report: " By selecting from each 
the features best adapted to our basic organization, fortified by our own early experiences in the 
war, the development of our great General Staff system was completed." 

The Staff was divided into five groups, and the chief of each group was an assistant to the 
Chief of the General Staff. Group 2 of the staff had charge of the censorship, the secret service, 
enemy intelligence, gathering and disseminating information, the preparation of maps, and all 
similar duties. In looking around for a head for that division, the boy who 26 years before 
had gone out from the Akron high school to West Point, was the choice of General Pershing and 
the other American officers in France as an ideal selection for the post. Accordingly, Brigadier 
General Dennis E. Nolan became G. 2 of the American Expeditionary Forces; and thus, an Erie 
County man appeared in France with the first American force and as one of the chief advisers 
to the Commanding General. He was then 46 years of age. 

At that time Brigadier General Nolan's family had moved to Tonawanda, leaving their home 
in Akron for a wider field, where a younger brother who had stepped from the University doors 
a short time before, might enter the practice of medicine. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 233 

Having completed his General Staff, General Pershing established the American headquarters 
at Chaumont, decided upon the size and make up of the American divisions, and planned the 
method of organization to be followed upon the arrival of troops. General Nolan immediately 
turned his attention to the immense task ahead of him, and built from the ground up the entire 
intelligence system of the United States Army in France; organized, and from then on adminis- 
tered the secret service work among the American forces. Upon General Nolan rested the respon- 
sibility of giving the American commanders information of the movements of the German forces. 
That he achieved remarkable success in his work was attested by many officers; General Pershing 
having cited him* personally for distinguished service. 

However successful he was in obtaining information as to the enemy movements, and no matter 
how valuable that service was to the country and the success of the American arms, General 
Nolan won his greatest distinction, and will be longest remembered by the men of the Arr erican 
Expeditionary Forces, for his work in the Argonne Forest in command of the 55th Infantry Brigade 
of the 28th Division, Pennsylvania national guardsmen. 

Knowing that the effort in the Argonne would be a mighty difficult one. General Pershing did 
not hesitate to use the most experienced men he had whenever and wherever he deemed their 
services more advantageous to the cause than the officers theretofore in command. To make 
certain the taking and holding of Apremont, General Pershing directed General Nolan late in 
September to proceed to the Argonne and take command of the 55th Brigade. In company with 
Colonel Walter Sweeney of Wheeling, W. Va., Nolan commanding the center column planned 
a defense of deep shell holes, in which he hid a number of machine gunners, on the outskirts of 
Apremont far in advance of his supporting brigades on the right and left. The Germans centered 
their attack on this advanced position and soon reached the shell holes containing the pick of Penn- 
sylvania's guardsmen. Those brave boys in the shell holes armed with machine guns caught 
the German horde coming forward and mowed them down like grass. The two regiments of Nol- 
an's brigade then going forward wiped out the remainder of the German force in that immediate 
locality and made the capture of Apremont complete and lasting. Returning soldiers state that 
neither " Colonel Sweeney nor Brigadier General Nolan commanding had any sleep for three days. " 

" I never knew that generals like that were right up there with us doughboys. Of course, we 
went forward. " 

This was the opinion expressed by a muddy, unshaven Pennsylvanian soldier who had just re- 
turned from the death-stalking heights above the Aire valley, speaking to another who personally 
knew the Brigadier General who was referred to. 

"General Nolan worked out the defense of Apremont before the German counter attack," 
said Lieutenant Davis of Philadelphia. "Then in the thickest of the fight he came out and joined 
us. We had 300 men and sixty machine guns. A Prussian regiment came over in the fog. We 
scattered into shell holes, ten men to each, and practically wiped them out. Those we did not 
wipe out our tanks coming up at dawn finished. He is every inch a man. 

"While we were up there fighting we saw him going from shell hole to shell hole, never bend- 
ing his head. That is what gives men grit. I never saw the general we had before outside of a 
dugout, the new one was always leading us." 

For his sei-vices with the Pennsylvania boys at Apremont, Major General Hay, commanding 
the Division, cited t him for extraordinary heroism in action. 

When the American advance through the Argonne became a certainty, General Nolan was 
returned to his duties at headquarters. 

*" Brigadier General Dennis E. Nolan, U. S. Army 
"For exceptionally meritorious and distinguished services 
"He organized and administered, with marked ability, the Intelligence Section of the General Staff of the American Expeditionary Forces. 
His estimates of the complex and everchanging military and political situations, his sound judgment and accurate discrimination were invaluable 
to the Government, and influenced greatly the success that attended the operations of the American Armies in Europe. 

"By command of General Pershing. "J. A. Ulio, Adjutant General." 

t "Brigadier General Dennis E. Nolan, 55th Infantry Brigade 
"For extraordinary heroism in action near Apremont, France, October 1, 1918 
"While the enemy was preparing a counter-attack, which they preceded by a terrific barrage, General Nolan made his way into the town of 
Apremont, and personally directed the movements of his tanks, under a most harassing fire of enemy machine guns, rifles and artillery. His indomi- 
table courage and coolness so inspired his forces, that about 400 of our troops repulsed an enemy attack of two German regiments." 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 

Despite the fact that National Guard soldiers resent the promotion of regulars over State officers, 
in the short time that General Nolan was with the Pennsylvania brigade he so won his men by 
his soldierly qualities and personal courage that when he left he was the most beloved officer in 
the division — [Information given to the editor by National Guard officers of the Twenty-eighth.] 

North Tonawanda furnished two other members of the Nolan family to the service of Uncle 
Sam in France. Captain Daniel A. Nolan was adjutant of the Fifth Infantry, stationed in the 
Canal Zone, Panama, when war was declared. He was detailed for duty at the Plattsburg train- 
ing camp during June, July and August of 1917, promoted Major National Army August 22, 
1917, and assigned to duty as adjutant of the Depot Brigade Camp Upton, N. Y. ; transferred 
to the 77th Division, National Army, on its departure for France in March, 1918, and assigned 
to command the 305th Machine Gun Battalion. He was the first officer of the National Army 
commanding a fighting unit to land in France. In June, 1918, he was ordered to the General 
Staff College at Langres; promoted to Lieutenant Colonel, National Army, in July, 1918. 

In the organization of the Sixth Corps in August Lieutenant Colonel Nolan was assigned to 
duty as Assistant G-1, the branch of the General Staff devoted to administration. He served 
with the Sixth Corps in the Marbache sector and in the Second Army Moselle offensive up to 
the date of the Armistice. He was recommended to the grade of colonel on merit while serving 
with the Sixth Army Corps. 

Another brother, Lieutenant Martin F. Nolan, a practicing physician in North Tonawanda, 
realized the pressing need in the army for medical men ; and the need was pressing, for the expedi- 
tionary force in the early days of the war was far short of its medical quota. Leaving his practice, 
young Nolan tendered his service to the Government and was sent to Base Hospital, No. 41, 
St. Denis, France. 

While the services of General Nolan at Chaumont and in the Argonne were exceptionally valu- 
able and valorous, and while Colonel Nolan rendered commendable service on the corps and 
divisional staffs, it was reserved for the youngest of this trio of splendid soldiers to crown the 
efforts of all with the noblest sacrifice that a man can make for his country. Lieutenant Martin 
F. Nolan, died October 9th, in a hospital adjacent to the one in which Don Martin, the Silver 
Creek war correspondent, died. 


Ruins cif a liiurcli al Monllaui'im 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 235 

Lieutenant Nolan's services and death are very clearly recounted in a letter to Mrs. Honora 
Nolan, heroic mother of the three soldiers, at 213 Goundry Street, North Tonawanda. The letter 
was sent by Captain Miller of Base Hospital No. 41 : 

"St. Denis, France, December 3, 1918. 

"Lieutenant Nolan's death was a great shock to us. He was sick only about five days. About two o'clock in the 
afternoon of October 9th the Lieutenant died in the presence of Abbe Nozais, English speaking Priest of the 
Cathedral of St. Denis, and a few friends. 

"His brother. General Nolan, was notified as soon as the diagnosis of pneumonia was made, but did not reach 
the hospital until the evening of the day on which he died. After death, his body, in a flag-draped casket, laid in 
state in the Chapelle of the Legion of Honor, which was at one time the worshipping place of the Benedictine Order 
of Monks. The casket was placed directly in front of the Altar, under a constant military guard; on either side where 
the floral tributes from members of the organization, officers, nurses and enlisted men. Funeral services were con- 
ducted by Abbe Nozais, who spoke beautifully of Lieutenant Nolan's fidelity and devotion to work among the sick 
and wounded. The casket was borne from the Chapel by six officers, placed in an automobile and escorted by the 
entire organization, led by the officers, to the gate. As the car passed out of the grounds, between the column of 
officers on either side, taps was sounded. 

"The death of Lieutenant Nolan struck a deep blow in our hearts, although we had known him only a short time. 
He had under his care at least two hundred patients — all of the most serious cases, such as pneumonia and gassed 
patients. It was probably due to his untiring efforts and long hours of work that he contracted pneumonia. No 
man ever labored more faithfully than did Martin Nolan. 

"Try hard as we may it is impossible not to meditate over the swiftness and tragedy of the death of such a man 
so far from home. To his loved ones at home this thought must strike all the deeper. Lieutenant Nolan was not 
permitted — though he tried hard — to serve his country on the battlefield. But his death here was none the less the 
Supreme Sacrifice. His life was filled with rare possibilities, but he sacrificed all to serve his country. Martin Nolan 
has played his part and proved himself a man. 

"Walter E. Miller, 
CaptainD.C.,B.H.U,A.P.0.702, A.E.F." 

238 Buffalo's Part in the World War 


WHILE many Buffalo men had rendered splendid service to their country, and not a few 
had made the Supreme Sacrifice in Belleau Wood and in the Second Battle of the Marne 
and at Soissons, at the Ourcq and at the Vesle, the widest range of Buffalo's participa- 
tion on the battlefields of France must be written in the Meuse-Argonne offensive and in the 
breaking of the Hindenburg Line. Up to that time Buffalo's banner had been carried gloriously, 
untarnished and with added lustre through each new engagement, by Buffalo men in the Regu- 
lars, in the Marines, and by those who fought with Donovan in the Rainbow Division, by those 
engaged in the brief, and valorous, but sad, experience of the 77th Division on the Vesle. 

To the 77th belongs the peculiarly dramatic credit, after its discouraging debut in battle, of 
graduating into an efficient combat division. It never had the advantages of leadership that fell 
to some of the other divisions ; it never had the transport equipment attached to other divisions 
and the task assigned it was one of sustained difficulties through the heart of the impenetrable 
Argonne. Its wounded frequently died of exposure through failure of the proper functioning of 
divisional units, but its courage never lessened and it performed its assigned duty courageously 
and completely. 

Perhaps it was stung into fighting efficiency by the bad mauling it received on the Vesle, or 
its new commander. Major General Robert Alexander, may have given it a new divisional spirit. 
In any event he aided tremendously in swinging the division into fighting form. When it left 
the Vesle sector on the night of September 16th, it was a new 77th Division in everything but 
a name. The Division was moved up in camions to the vicinity of Civry-en- Argonne and attached 
to the First Army Corps. Buffalo officers were not too numerous in the Division. Karl E. Wil- 
helm, noted Cornell athlete and prominent Buffalonian, destined to play an important part in 
the Argonne offensive, had been assigned to Company E, 308th Infantry, under Captain George 
M'Murtry. The only other Buffalo officer in that regiment was Lieutenant Cook of Lackawanna. 
They had won their commissions at Fort Niagara, at the Officers' Training Camp, getting the 
documents in November, 1917, and were then detailed to Camp LTpton, sailing for overseas with 
the Division and eventually reaching the Argonne Forest. 

Every Buffalo man in a combat division in France, not then in the hospital, participated in 
that giant offensive. Buffalo's national guardsmen, in the 27th Division, still co-operating with 
the British Army, were given the mighty task of breaking the famous Hindenburg Line at a point 
near Bony. The artillery of the 27th Division, including the 102d Trench Mortar Battery and 
the 106th Field Artillery, still separated from the division, and assigned to support the 33d Divi- 
sion formed the base of the Argonne hinge. The 106th took a position on September 25th on 
the historic "Dead Man's Hill." Next, to the left of the 33d, was the 80th Division, then came 
the 4th Division of regulars, and besides the latter the 79th; then the 37th, 91st, 35th, 28th, 
and on the extreme right of the American Army, the end of the whip which was to slash through 
the Argonne Forest, came the New York 77th Division, with its many hundreds of Buffalo boys. 
Beyond the 77th was the French Fourth Army its right of line at Vienne-le-Chateau. The 78th 
Division had orders to move into a reserve position. Thus the two divisions, containing the bulk of 
the Buffalo selective service men, then overseas and in combat service, were relatively close together 
on September 25th when the hour of attack was announced to the regimental leaders. The artil- 
lery of the 78th Division, operating with the 90th Division up to that time, was attached to its 
own division and went to the Argonne front reserve line along with the remainder of the 78th 

The Argonne Forest is about 20 miles long and seven miles wide. The line of attack extended 
from the Meuse to the Aisne on the start off. The thin line of French that had been holding the 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 


line was withdrawn on the 25th, and used with the Fourth French Army on the extreme left 
along the Aisne; French were also holding the lines southeast of the American sector. 

Although the American line had moved up the 23d of September, the French line was not with- 
drawn until late on the 25th to mask the arrival of the Americans. The attack on the 26th was 
a surprise attack. 

The Argonne is a region of continuous dense woodland and thickest underbrush, a succession 
of hills and ravines, of brooks and swamps, with few roads, and those few invariably commanded 
by the wooded heights. The Germans held all of the Argonne except the open woods in the south, 
and in four years they had fortified the Forest by every means known to scientific ingenuity into 
an impregnable fortress which, perhaps, only Americans would have been daring enough to tackle. 

German artillery commanded the few roads of approach and every treacherous ravine. Ger- 
man machine guns swept every forest path and insignificant trail and every hill slope. German 
machine guns were further posted thickly in echelon, so as to form interlocking bands of fire, 
long chains of machine gun barrages. The trees were interlaced with barbed wire, with succes- 
sive defensive systems running miles back. The Germans, too, had been prolific in their use of 
cement. In four years they had constructed systems of reinforced concrete trenches; the terrain 
was dotted with cement "pill-boxes." There were blockhouses and tree top "fortresses." 

Above all, the Germans had four years of experience in Argonne Forest guerilla warfare and a 
perfect knowledge of the terrain, reinforced by lookout towers, concealed observation posts, an 

Outside a Dugout in the Argonne Forest 

Members of the 307th Infantry, 77th Division, at a dugout south of Charlevuix Mills 
in the thickest part of the forest 

240 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

elaborate telephone system and a narrow gauge railway system for bringing up troops, ammuni- 
tion and supplies. 

No German soldier had ever dreamed of an attack through this Forest, and everything was 
done to conceal the nature of the operation from them. The American artillery observers during 
the period of preparation wore French uniforms. On the night of the 25th, the 77th and other 
divisions in the reserve line moved up and the French came back. Owing to the vast amount of 
territory covered by the 77th, the four infantry divisions were necessarily in the line, the 305th 
on the extreme right and the others, in numerical order, stretched to the left until they met up 
with the 1st French Division. 

That, at least, had been the arrangement. On the left flank for service between the 77th and 
the French, a Franco-American force had been organized which was to act as a combat liaison 
group. It was made up of the 368th Infantry of the 92d Division. A barrage was laid down 
for the 368th, but it did not advance, and the 77th went away on the morning of the 26th with 
its left flank exposed and continued so through the entire Argonne drive. Owing to a misunder- 
standing, or failure of leadership, the 368th Infantry did not take its appointed place. 

After the first two days of the attack, surprise days for the enemy, the German defense began 
to stiffen as fresh divisions were rushed into the strongly fortified forest, but the driving power 
of the Americans was not to be denied. On the right of the line from the Aire to the Meuse, the 
troops moved forward rapidly. The 37th Ohio Division, the 79th drafted men from Pennsylvania 
and Maryland, the veteran 4th, the 91st, 80th and the 33d moved up in unison; the last named 
division, supported by the 106th Field Artillery and the 102d Trench Mortar Battery, two Buff'alo 
units, followed the Meuse, and cleaned up the territory from Forges to Dannevoux. Charpentry 
and Montfaucon had also been taken before night of the 27th and, on the following day, Cierges 
fell. The American Army had taken 10,000 prisoners on the first day. 

As the 91st Division moved forward behind its thundering barrage that morning and encountered 
the first line of resistance, it was quickly discovered that one of the infantry brigades was badly 
disorganized. They were in the line just west of the Aire River in contact with the 35th Divi- 
sion on the left and the 37th on the right, the three divisions moving ofl^ together from the Boure- 
villes-Avocourt Road and headed through Cheppy and Very to take Charpentry and Epinonville. 

Colonel Henry C. Jewett, a brother of Sherman S. Jewett and Mrs. Fred H. Williams of Buf- 
falo — a Buffalonian himself until he entered the military service from West Point in 1901 — was 
in command of the 316th Engineers, attached to the 91st Division, when his division went over 
the top that morning. Colonel Jewett's men had cut the first wires in the forest. He was work- 
ing at that task when Major General W. H. .Johnston, in command of the Division, sent for 
and directed him to proceed forward as commander of the disorganized infantry brigade, the 
182d Brigade, at that moment virtually demoralized. The General in command of the Brigade 
had been removed a few minutes before. Colonel Jewett, from reports which have since 
come through from officers and men, quickly reorganized the brigade, took up his position in 
the line, and went into Charpentry that night having cleared the Apremont-Montfaucon Road. 
They were then right in step and on time with the 37th Division. For courageous leadership and 
intelligent handling of the brigade, Colonel Jewett was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross, 
the order reading: u 

"Colonel Henry C. Jewett, 316th Engineers, for extraordinary heroism in action during the Argonne-Meuse offensive, September 25th to Octo- 
ber 4, 1918. Assigned to the command of an Infantry brigade. Colonel Jewett was directed to go forward, find his brigade, and consolidate his 
regiments, which had become separated. He crossed territory under terrific fire and pulled his rear regiment to the aid of the regiment in the front 
which was seriously engaged, thereafter commanding the movements of both regiments in a highly creditable manner." 

After the first phase of the Argonne, a Brigadier-General was given command of the 182d 
Brigade and Colonel Jewett returned to his own work, the engineering regiment having a most 
difficult part to play from that point forward in the Argonne attack. Later on Colonel Jewett 
acted as Chief of Staff" of the 91st Division. 

While a Buffalo Colonel was thus distinguishing himself by heroic effort, a Buffalo private in 
the 147th Infantry of the 37th Division, fighting by the side of Colonel Jewett, likewise showed 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 241 

his valor. Charles Frueh, of 1694 William Street, the chap who had failed to pass the Buffalo 
doctors, but who effected an enlistment in the Ohio Division was shot down by a machine gun- 
ner early in the day. Frueh's company, along with others of the 147th Regiment, was halted by a 
severe machine gun action from the crest of a hill. His company was compelled to fall back, 
leaving a number of wounded on the ground, among them the Buffalo private wi'ithing with a 
bullet through his thigh. A German lieutenant with a detachment of seven men hurrying forward, 
searching the ground, came across Frueh and directed him to go to the rear a prisoner. 

"I can't walk," said the Buffalo man, speaking in German. The Lieutenant told him he would 
have to go back, but the lad replied he would rather die where he was than become a prisoner. 

The angry Lieutenant grabbing a riffe from the nearest soldier, fired six times from his hip 
at the prostrate boy on the ground. Five of the bullets took effect in the boy's side and arm, 
but none fatally. The return of the reorganized American company put the Germans to flight, 
but the German Lieutenant and five of his men were brought down before they could get out of 
harm's way. Frueh finally recovered. 

The gallant 77th Division during that time was in the center of the forest, ploughing its way 
through. Many of the Divisions in the territory between the Aire and Meuse had fairly open 
going, but the 77th was in the heart of dense wood, and had been slowed up until, on the 29th, 
the center of the line was stopped. On October 1st an attack made along the entire front by 
the 77th was checked at every point and the 77th found itself anchored. Orders came that night 
to attack again in the morning. 

242 Buffalo's Part in the World War 


THE morning attack came on time. Cyril Brown, New York World staff correspondent, in 
his account of the 77th's advance, pursuant to orders, on the following morning, October 
2d, tells picturesquely and accurately the story which constitutes the history of the "Lost 
Battalion. " Lieutenant Karl Wilhelm, commanded Company E, 308th Infantry, of that Battal- 
ion, and thus, in that most hidden spot in the black heart of the Argonne, Buffalo was again 
faithfully and courageously repi'esented. 

The division was ordered to attack at 12.50 P. M. on its entire front regardless of losses. The 
elements of the division were further ordered, if successful in breaking through the German line, 
to advance regardless of flank protection and to hold their objectives until the rest of the line 
caught up with them. The Division attacked on schedule time, supported by a barrage and by 
a simultaneous attack by the French holding the Binarville sector west of the 77th. But the 
attack ran into murderous enfilading fire from cleverly concealed machine guns which apparently 
left not a loophole in the entire front. The Germans held all along the line and the American 
attack seemed to be a complete failure. 

When the situation cleared a slender ray of success appeared. One battalion alone had suc- 
ceeded in breaking through the German line. At all other points the Division had been held up. 
Elements of the 1st and 2d Battalions of the 308th Infantry, reinforced by sections of Companies 
C and D of the 306th Machine Gun Battalion, all under the command of Major Charles S. Whit- 
tlesey had found Achilles's Heel of the impregnable German line — its one vulnerable spot. This 
was the Ravine de Charlevaux, on the extreme left of the Division's line and running through 
the center of the 308th Infantry's sector. The one undefended spot of the German line was in 
the bed of this ravine, and by a process of infiltration through the underbrush along the eastern 
bank of its slender stream Major Whittlesey's force, now comprising Companies A, B, C, E, G 
and H of the 308th Infantry, with the added machine gun detachments, succeeded in breaking 
through the German line and alone reaching its objective, the so-called Charlevaux Mills. 

Without support of any kind on either flank this solitaiy band of unconscious heroes had 
reached — and intended to hold — a position deep within the enemy's lines. On the left the French 
attack had made no progress and had been held up in front of La Palette Pavilion. On the right 
the 307th Infantry had been unable to make progress and had been checked. 

At that time the "Lost Battalion" had no way of knowing that it was far in advance of the 
checked elements on both its flanks. It only knew that it had broken through the German trench 
and wire system, losing about ninety men, but capturing two officers, twenty-eight privates and 
three machine guns. It confidently expected support in the form of reinforcements; and, as a 
matter of fact, the 3d Battalion of the 307th Infantry actually did attempt to follow it that same 
night, but only Company K succeeded in slipping through and reinforcing Major Whittlesey in 
the morning. 

To the layman it might look as if Major Whittlesey's band of heroes had blundered with their 
eyes open into a man-trap. But nobody had blundered. Major Whittlesey had specific orders 
to break through the Charlevaux Mills and hold it until the rest of the line came up, which left 
him no discretion for avoiding a possible man-traj) by retreating, or, once in. trying to fight his 
way back. 

That night Major Whittlesey took up a position near the crest of the hill south of La Viergette- 
Binarville, about 500 meters east of the Charlevaux Mills. He and his band did not know until 
morning that in the night the Germans had been supei'-active, digging trenches, running barbed 
wire entanglements and posting machine guns in his rear, across the path of his advance, and 
thus repairing the break in the German line which his force had made. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 243 

Casualties had reduced his command to 600 effectives, including the machine gunners. These 
"babes in the Argonne woods" were now hopelessly "lost" in a deep "pocket" formed by the 
junction of two steep ravines, with slender streams, meeting at right angles. On four sides they 
were hemmed in by steep, densely wooded slopes. In the darkness Major Whittlesey led his men, 
struggling through the morass, across the brook and junction of the two ravines and up the 
tangled slope almost to the crest. In front, and about 100 yards from the crest, the Binarville- 
La Viergette road hugged the slope. With the utmost difficulty, funk holes were dug in the stony 
ground of the hill slope. Also, the men had no blankets or overcoats. And lastly, they had already 
eaten up their reserve I'ations in the course of their advance. But this night they were to enjoy 
their last quiet, restful night. Not until morning did they discover the true character of their 
desperate position. At daybreak October 2d details were sent to the rear for rations. At the 
same time. Company E, under Lieutenant Wilhelm, was sent back to attack from the west of 
the ravine from which the original attack had been launched, in order to assist reinforcements 
in getting through and up. 

244 Buffalo's Part in the World War 


THE situation was a desperate one, but the uncertainty as to the location of the others, Amer- 
ican and German, did not force home the idea on the Lost Battalion, that conditions were 
any different that day from what they had been on each preceding day. The state of affairs 
is best gleaned from Lieutenant Wilhelm's account of his experiences just before and after he 
was sent back to make an opening for reinforcements. He had been away from his company 
from the 15th of August until the beginning of the Argonne drive on September 26th, on account 
of a severe gassing which had closed both his eyes while the Division was on the Vesle River 
front. He did not consider the position of the Lost Battalion as seriously then as some others 
did, for the reason that many small detachments of different companies were isolated from their 
companions during the "gang fighting" through the woods. Whittlesey's force had been twice 
cut oft' within a few days; it was large in numbers and many of the men came back, while, in 
the cases of small numbers, frequently none returned. Lieutenant Wilhelm explaining the situa- 
tion said: 

"The Argonne Forest is very similar to the Adirondacks, with the exception that the under- 
brush is much thicker than in the Adirondacks. Our daily progress had varied little. Each morn- 
ing at about 4 o'clock our barrage would start and at 4.30 the troops would go forward until 
they encountered the Germans, when the action would be fought out. Due to the thick shrubbery 
and new formation known as "gang formation," which merely meant that each non-commis- 
sioned officer took from six to eight men and proceeded in the general direction of the German 
lines, keeping in touch as best he could, with the small units on his right and left, and because of 
the nature of the ground, the utmost confusion at times prevailed. It was almost impossible to 
tell where the various gangs were operating or where the Germans were located. 

"The third or fourth day out, my company was with two companies from the 1st Battalion. 
We figured that we had gone a mile or so in advance of the main body when we ran into stiff 
machine gun and rifle fire and dug in on the slope of a hill. Major Whittlesey commanding the 
composite battalion sent me back to the main body to tell of the situation and give them our 
location. In our advance before the main body we had dropped oft" runner posts consisting of 
two or three men at intervals of a few hundred yards so that messages could be conveyed forward 
and back as easily as possible. On my way back I met Lieutenant Colonel Smith of New York 
City, who was commanding two companies which had dug in alongside a narrow gauge railway 
about half a mile behind the advanced battalion. I reported to him, and, as it was raining and 
there was no shelter, I suggested to the Colonel that we go to the first-aid station which had 
been established in a little shanty a few hundred yards away, where we might get a bite to eat. 

"We had just arrived at the first aid station when Regimental Headquarters called upon the 
field telephone and informed Lieutenant Colonel Smith that the runner service had broken down 
and it was the Colonel's order that he re-establish it immediately. It was then one or two o'clock 
in the morning and pitch dark, so the Colonel and myself worked back to Regimental Head- 
quarters, arriving there an hour before daylight. 

"As soon as daylight came we started for the advanced Battalion with a guide leading. After 
the guide came Lieutenant Colonel Smith, then myself, then the Colonel's Adjutant, a second 
lieutenant and two or three runners. We went forward from post to post without difficulty until 
we had gone within approximately a quarter of a mile of the advanced Battalion. Suddenly we 
ran into a group of Germans with a light machine gun who had been practically concealed in the 
thick underbrush. One of the runners and myself flopped down on the right of the little path 
we had been following, while the Colonel and the rest of the party threw themselves to the left 
of the path and we fired with our revolvers as rapidly as possible at this little German group. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 


The Home of Bismarck in 1870 

House on the road to Grand Pre, said to have been occupied by the "Blood and Iron Chancellor" while on his way to Paris. 
The youth in the window is Private Charles Mader, 312th Machine Gun Company 

Unfortunately, a revolver had little chance against a machine gun and in 20 or 30 seconds the 
regular patt-patt-patt-patt-patt of the gun told us they were scouring the woods. The German 
gun fired for a few moments and then was silent. As soon as it ceased, I crawled to the path and 
ran back towards our own line as fast as possible. After going back some 200 yards I found the 
Colonel's Adjutant lying on the ground with a very nasty wound through his thigh. He told 
me that the party had scattered and that he thought the Lieutenant Colonel and two others 
were killed, which fact was afterwards verified. After bandaging him as well as possible with 
our first aid kits, I started to drag him back, but found it was almost impossible to make progress, 
as he was rapidly losing strength. I called for help, and. though this drew a couple of snipers' 
bullets, it resulted in one of the runners who had gone out with us coming to my assistance and 
we got back without difficulty after that. 

"The Division was moving forward against very determined opposition, but in two days the 
Germans were cleared out of the territory intervening between the main forces and the advanced 
Battalion. I was then given command of E Company, as Major Budd was sent to Staff School 
and Captain McMurtry was made acting Major of the 2d Battalion. 

"Now all this occurred prior to October 2d when the Battalion was finally cut off. 

"In advancing I found that two platoons of my Company which were ahead of me had gone 
into action with some German posts and went up towards them to find out what the conditions 
were, accompanied by my orderly, a little Italian from New York. While short, he was very 
broad and powerful and a fine soldier. The orderly was preceding me by 15 or 20 yards when I 
suddenly heard him shout and lunge with his bayonet behind a group of bushes. Much to my 
amazement a six-foot German was partially hidden there and in a moment the German and the 
orderly were hot at it with their bayonets. The sight was so unexpected that for some half minute 
I forgot entirely that I was supposed to participate and watched anxiously to see how the fight 
would come out. Suddenly I realized that I was supposed to be doing a little scrapping myself 

246 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

about that time, so I managed to get within six or eight feet of the German and shot him. I 
rather expected to be at least thanked for this action by my orderly, but he turned around with 
an expression of disgust on his face and said: 

"'Oh! hell, Lieutenant, what did you want to do that for? I'd have got him in a minute my- 

"On the morning of October 2d we had camped on a hillside and I had put two or three auto- 
matic rifle outposts over the brow of the hill. Just before the time to start and while our barrage 
was still going on, my Sergeant reported that one of these outposts could not be found. As I 
had helped place them the night before I thought I knew their exact location and walked over 
the brow of the hill to call them in personally. I came upon a group of five figures who were 
looking at right angles to me and who, of course, could not hear of my approach because of the 
noise of the barrage. Never doubting but what they were my post I advanced to within some 
15 or 20 yards of them when suddenly one of the figures saw me approaching and without getting 
up, fired at me with a revolver over his shoulder. Luckily the bullets merely struck the little 
finger of my left hand and as a matter of fact I did not know for some time that he had wounded 
me, being too much plain scared. I fired at them while retreating at which they threw one or 
two hand gi-enades in my general direction, and, while these did not injure me, they added suffi- 
ciently to my fright, so as to send me back to the company immediately. I rounded up a squad 
and went back to clean out this nest, but, as usual found that they had left for parts unknown. 

"The advance that day continued according to schedule. Late that afternoon I came through 
a ravine and found myself with the forty-five or fifty men left in my company (the others had 
been wounded or killed during the previous fighting) and with four or five other companies dug 
in on the side of a hill. Major Whittlesey was in command and Captain McMurtry second in 
command. This eventually became the site of the famous so-called "Lost Battalion." Properly 
speaking the Battalion was not lost at all. Its location was well known but the German resistance 
between it and the main body was so powerful that all attempts to relieve it for six or seven 
days proved vain. The 307th Infantry tried hard but lost many men.* 

"On digging ourselves in we immediately encountered machine gun and rifle fire from the 
north, east and west. The second morning after arriving here I was ordered by Major Whittlesey 
to take my company and work back along the side of a hill to connect with two companies who 
were supposed to work forward from the main body and toward us. I started out soon after 
daylight but after getting a half mile away from the Lost Battalion, was startled by a voice on 
the hill top above us saying: 

"'What Company is that?' 

"Three or four men immediately answered: 'It is E Company.' 

"Something in the tones of the voice made me suspicious and I sent a scout up the hill to see 
if he could get any definite information. At the end of ten minutes he did not return, so I crawled 
up the hill a short distance myself and again heard talking, the men speaking in German although 
I could not distinguish what they said. Returning to the Company I gave the order to move 
ahead but about this time a terrific rifle and machine gun fire commenced, the Germans firing 
at us from above and also both flanks — while from across the little valley snipers started working. 

" I took ten men and worked for a hundred and fifty yards to see if there was a possible chance 

*Ed. — A popular Buffalo boy, a member of the 307th Infantry, Sergeant Frank Holtz, whose home was in Humboldt Parkway near Main Street, 
gave his life in an effort to relieve the "Lost Battalion." The story of that heroic endeavor is told in a letter from Captain R. M. Shields of the 
307th Infantry to the boy's father: 

"Sergeant Holtz took part in a battalion attack on a Boche barbed wire position in difficult woods in the heart of the Argonne forest — in 
an attack aimed to relieve the battalion of the 308th which was cut off by the Boche and had been marooned a kilo ahead of us in a valley for 
two or three days. Undoubtedly you read all about this in the New York papers about that time, for it was reported faithfully and at length. 
Sergeant Holtz was wounded about October 4th. We relieved the battalion of the ;108th Infantry, on, I believe, the 6th, after it had held on five 
days without food — relieved it by a turning attack on the Boche left flank. About Holtz, himself, I can say nothing but praise. He was an ex- 
cellent soldier and a fearless one. He was promoted Sergeant from private and later made platoon sergeant. Nothing that I can say, of course, 
can relieve your grief in losing him. He gave up his life like a soldier." 

Washington, June 4, 1919 — Associated Press. — The distinguished service cross has been awarded by General Pershing to the late Sergeant 
Frank F. Holtz, son of Mrs. Henry F. Holtz of No. 207 Humboldt Parkway, Buffalo, who died from wounds received in action. The award was 
made for "extraordinary heroism in action near Moulin de Charlavaux, France, October 4, 1918." In announcing the award to-day the War 
Department said: "His platoon held up and cut off from the remainder of the company, he volunteered to establish liaison and summon reinforce- 
ments after several runners had been killed or captured in the attempt. Passing through intense artillery and machine gun fire, he carried word 
to his company commander, but was mortally wounded while returning to his platoon." 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 247 

for the Company advancing between the machine gun firing from the foot of the hill and the 
Infantry Company above us on the hill. After five of these men had been shot I determined that 
this was not feasible and started back toward the remainder of the Company, only to find that 
the Germans had swung down in between myself and the rest of the Company. We were cut oflf 
from the Company. The only thing left for us was to head straight up the hill and back into 
German territory. When we had advanced five or six yards we found that there were Germans 
all around us. They were shouting to one another and evidently had some idea we were in that 
vicinity, so we crawled into thick underbrush and lay there all during that day. 

"A little path some fifteen yards away from us evidently led to a German gun position of 
some sort, for all during the day the Germans were passing and repassing by twos and threes — 
so close that we could hear what they said. In my party was a sergeant, a corporal and two 
privates, and after dark we decided that it would be much safer to work back in smaller groups 
as two or three men would make less noise than would five, so Sergeant Callahan and myself 
started out working along this little path which led in the general direction of the American lines. 
It took us from 8 P. M. to 12 P. M. that night to go an eighth of a mile, and we had to be exceed- 
ingly careful about noise. Every few minutes we would crouch at the side of the path while 
Germans would go by talking, unconscious of the fact that we were hidden there. Finally, near 
midnight we came upon an open plain a half mile across, which was more or less illuminated by 
flares which the Germans were throwing up every few minutes. Directly in front of us were 
three stretches of barbed wire each about 30 yards wide and protected by machine guns located 
every few hundred yards. 

"After a short rest we started working through this bai'bed wire — our progress being neces- 
sarily slow as every time a flare went up we would have to stand perfectly rigid until it had died 
out. They fired frequently with machine guns — searching the wire for any enemy that might 
be there, but as luck would have it we got through safely and crawled across the open plain to 
our own posts. 

"On arriving in the American line I reported and then went to the rear to have my finger 
dressed and got a shot of anti-tetanus. Four or five days later the " Lost Battalion" was relieved. 
The survivors certainly presented a hideous spectacle, due to lack of food and medical attention. 
I was then assigned to command of F Company and went forward again working in reserve." 

248 Buffalo's Part in the World War 


THE four or five days intervening, between the time Lieutenant Wilheim got through and 
the " Lost Battalion " was finally reached by the onward push of the American forces, were 
bitterly contested days for the men on the hillside. 

George F. Speich, 798 Elk Street, Buffalo, a corporal in K Company, 307th Infantry, fought 
heroically all that day in the bitter drive against the German line. The Germans were holding 
at virtually every point as they did on the preceding day. Speich was in the front lines by 
the side of Eddie Grant, Captain "D" Company, 307th Infantry, a former popular member of 
the New York baseball team, who was killed the following day. 

Toward evening, the eighty-six members of "K" Company were sent back to the kitchen for 
mess and then late at night, were returned to the line. Speich says Company K, apparently, 
hit about the same spot Major Whittlesey had penetrated earlier in the day, for as they fought 
on through the night they suddenly, as dawn was breaking, came across Whittlesey's Battalion 
on the slope of a hill near a ravine, and pulled in alongside of them. The men were tired out 
and laid down for a little nap. They were awakened by shell fire and discovered the Germans were 
firing at them from all sides and they were really boxed in. 

The first man Speich encountered on the morning of October 2d was William Wright, Company 
"D", 306th Machine Gun Battalion, another Buffalo boy. As far as he knew they were the 
only two Buffalo men, apart from Lieutenant Karl Wilheim, with the "Lost Battalion," although 
there may have been others. 

Telling his story. Corporal Speich said: "W^e were on the extreme right flank; the 308th was 
on the left. The Germans were attacking us mostly with hand grenades and minenwerfer, but 
we were dug in under a road half way up the hill. That road was swept continuously, as was 
also the valley below. The side of the hill was thickly wooded and contained, where we dug in, 
a very heavy brush. We could frequently see the Germans on the hill above us. 

"We had had a good supper the previous night, but did not have any food with us when we 
broke through and joined up with Whittlesey's Battalion on the morning of the 2d. We found 
that the 308th, also, was without food. They did not have even a bit of hardtack. We had 
plenty of rifle ammunition, but were short on hand grenades. Of course, if a fellow was wounded 
or killed, we would go out at night and take his belt off and use his ammunition. A number of 
our fellows were wounded on the second of October, the first day that we were in the brush, 
and it was rather pitiful because we could render them no assistance during the day. At night 
we would go out and take their canteens, fill them with water from a nearby creek and give them 
a drink. We could not change their bandages, because we had but two bandages apiece and 
those were about used up. Our aeroplanes soared over us several times, but they could not see 
us in the brush, although we could see them. We put out towels to attract their attention, but 
I never heard whether they located us or not. I do not think they did. On two afternoons, the 
Germans came after us with liquid fire, but they were too far distant and no one suffered from 
tliat attack. Our fellows were gradually going under, however, from shrapnel wounds and exhaus- 
tion. After three or four days on the hill they began to feel the need of food. I got a slight wound 
in the leg caused by shrapnel, but was not very badly injured. Some of the boys were in pretty 
bad shape, a number of them having shrapnel in their backs. Of course, we used our rifles to the 
best advantage. If we saw a movement anywhere in range we would take a crack at it, primarily 
however, to keep them off us rather than with any hope of inflicting very serious damage. 

"The night we went in we had eighty-six men in the company, but when the relief finally 
showed up on October 7th there were but forty-two men able to go on. The relief battalion of 
the 307th, the first to get there, came up to us on the night of the 7th, but the fellows who came 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 249 

up had only their iron rations and they gave that to those who were most seriously wounded 
and in greatest need of sustenance. The next morning, however, they brought up coffee, jam 
and bread, and we had a regular feast. They had a large number of ambulances and took out 
the seriously wounded first. The ambulances were busy all day taking the men away. I did not 
get out until about 4 o'clock in the afternoon. You can appreciate the suffering of some of the 
wounded who had lain there for five and six days with nothing to eat. I went to Base Hospital 
No. 15 at Chaumont, but f was all right in a short time and got back again with the regiment 
for the final drive." 

Private Wright was not seriously hurt, but suffered severely for the want of food and from 
exposure and continuous watching. Being a member of the machine gun battalion, he was out 
firing until all of their ammunition was gone. 

He left Buffalo in February, 1918, and went overseas with the 77th Division. 

The 77th Division had been in traps before; in fact, had just previously got out of one and 
were far from being unfamiliar with such situations. Whittlesey's men, as Speich's story shows 
had settled themselves in a small wooded patch on the side of the hill where Lieutenant Wil- 
helm had left them. The German artillery opened fire the morning after their arrival, but the 
shells failed to reach. They whizzed over the hill and over the heads of the American soldiers 
near its crest. A trench mortar battery was doing more effective work. A detachment sent back 
to stop it was raked with a withering machine gun fire which compelled retirement. 

Captain McMurtry was convinced that Lieutenant Wilhelm had been killed in his eft'ort to 
reach the back area. The Battalion, however, had no intention of going backward. 

The German artillery fire had opened on the morning of October 2d, but its failure to reach 
them satisfied the leaders of the Battalion that they had nothing to fear up in front; accordingly 
they prepared to hold their position until the balance of the Division came through. 

Not realizing how widely scattered were the forces behind them, nor what difficulties the small 
detachments were encountering in their endeavor to break through the German line, they expected 
help to arrive the following day. Several German attempts during the night to close in on the 
Americans were met by a machine gun and rifle fire that withered up the attacking party, and 
the Boche left many of their men on the hillside. 

Each day after that was much like the preceding one, except that the situation gradually grew 
worse. The American wounded were without proper attention, and the pangs of hunger added 
a new element of danger. By Sunday, October 6th, Whittlesey's force, originally close to 700 
men, had been reduced to less than 300. Both machine gun officers. Lieutenants Noon and Peabody 
were killed that day; only one machine gun out of nine was still working and ammunition was 
almost gone. 

Monday, October 7, saw the soul crisis of the "Lost Battalion." From none of the men had 
come a suggestion of surrender. The subtle temptation now came from the enemy. In the morn- 
ing a patrol of nine, went into the woods to try to recover a food parcel dropped by one of our 
aeroplanes. Outnumbered and overpowered by a German outpost, five were killed, four wounded 
and taken prisoner. 

One of these was sent back to the Battalion with a note from the German commanding officer, 

"Sir: The bearer of this present has been taken prisoner by us. He refused to give the German Intelligence officer 
any answer to his question, and is quite an honorable fellow, doing honor to his fatherland in the strictest sense of 
the word. 

"He has been charged against his will, believing that he is doing wrong to his country, to carry forward this present 
letter to the officer in charge of the battalion of the 77th Division with the purpose to recommend the commander 
to surrender with his forces, as it would be quite useless to resist any more, in view of the present conditions. 

"The suffering of your wounded men can be heard over here in the German lines and we are appealing to your 
humane sentiments to stop. A white flag shown by one of your men will tell us that you agree with these conditions. 
Please treat the bearer as an honorable man. He is quite a soldier." 

Major Whittlesey, Captain McMurtry and Captain Holderman read the note in turn. Major 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 251 

Whittlesey ordered the two white panels, spread on the ground for the purpose of attracting the 
attention of American aeroplanes, to be removed, so that not even a suspicion of a white flag 
of surrender might show on that hillside. 

The news of the German note, tempting the "Lost Battalion" to surrender, quickly spread 
among the men; but not a man was in favor of it. Prostrate on the ground, in many cases too 
weak from hunger to stir, they had life and spirit enough left in them to call to the Boche to 
"come over and get us," amplified with other choice epithets, "Tell them to go to hell!" being 
the mildest of these. 

In the evening unmistakable American rifle and machine gun fire, unmistakably coming their 
way, sounded like sweet music in the ears of the "Lost Battalion." But they had to put up 
one last and hardest fight before the approaching relief became effective. The Germans tried 
a final farewell desperate assault, this time with liquid fire. But, like all their innumerable attacks 
before, this one, too, was frustrated by the survivors of the " Lost Battalion, " and as the last Ger- 
mans were beaten back and disappeared, men of the 307th Infantry were coming up on the right 
while patrols of the 308th were reported advancing from the south. The agony of the "Lost Bat- 
talion" was over. On the morning of October 8th, 252 survivors of the original 679 returned 
from the "pocket," leaving the dead to hold the position. 

Corporal Vincent V. Zielinski, Company I, 306th Infantry, who had figured in the release of 
the Lost Battalion in the Argonne performed an act of greater heroism at St. Juvin in the 
approach to Grand Pre on October 15th. The official citation says: 

"Corporal Vincent V. Zielinski, I Company, 306 Infantry, For extraordinary heroism in action at Saint Juvin, France, on October 15, 1918. 
Corporal Zielinski volunteered and carried a message of vital importance in connection with the capture of Saint Juvin through an intense 
artillery barrage, displaying courage and persistent devotion to duty. Home address, Mrs. Eva Zielinski, Mother, No. 1 12 Gorski Street, 
Buffalo, N. Y." 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 253 



ONE Battery of the good old 65th Regiment, now converted into the 106th Field Artillery, 
got into action on the St. Mihiel front, but the regiment did not get its real christening 
until the Meuse-Argonne Offensive began. Through the latter part of September they were, 
however, gradually working their way up to the front lines. On the day the Marines drove the 
Boche out of the top of Belleau Wood, Buffalo's old "standby" landed in France. It was June 
18th, 1918. Their port of entry was St. Nazaire. They had crossed the Atlantic on the " Matsonia ". 

Colonel Hines, who had been in command of the regiment at Spartanburg, did not make the 
trip across, Lieutenant-Colonel John D. Howland, being in command on the trip. Shortly after 
arriving at the training camp in France, however, Lieutenant-Colonel Howland was succeeded 
by Colonel Emery T. Smith as commanding oificer; and shortly thereafter detached entirely 
from the regiment. Lieutenant Henri Berteaux, a representative of the French Army, was assigned 
as liaison officer. The French Lieutenant became popular with the men and officers of the regi- 
ment and his experience and help were a constant factor in the development of the efficiency of 
the regiment, during the training period of July and August. 

On the 6th and 7th of September, the regiment left its training camp and headed up toward 
the St. Mihiel front, where Battery "A," Captain Burkhardt, commanding, got into action for 
a short time at Balencourt. 

Lieutenant Colonel John T. Delaney of New York City had been designated as second in 
command of the regiment, when Lieutenant-Colonel Howland was detached, and Lieutenant 
Colonel Verbeck of Manlius, N. Y. was also added to the Staff. Major Louis H. Eller and Major 
Bradley Goodyear were the ranking Buffalo officers of the regiment. Major Eller had served 
many years with the old guard in its State militia days, while Major Goodyear was comparatively 
a new comer in the ranks. In the early period of the war, when Buffalo was not thoroughly aroused 
to the importance of the struggle overseas, Mr. Goodyear was one of the men who gave his time 
and money and best thought to the preparedness movement and, as evidence of his willingness 
to serve, enlisted in the 65th Regiment, N. G. S. N. Y. 

The Buffalo Captains in the Regiment included Patrick J. Keeler, a Judge of the City Court; 
Chauncey J. Hamlin, lawyer, clubman, and like Goodyear and Keeler, an earnest worker in the 
development of the Buffalo regiment in the days when the people did not believe war possible; 
Walter D. Parlour, Harry L. Gilchriese, John C. Grabau, Medical; Howard H. Burkhardt, 
George Toomey, John J. Curtin, William F. Schohl, Williamsville; Lieutenants, Douglas P. 
Walker, Edwin S. Burrows, Marvin W. Marcus, Joseph R. Hess and Carleton B. Briggs, Lancaster. 

Captain Harry Gilchriese writing from Verdun, tells the story of the activities of the old Regi- 
ment as it passed from the St. Mihiel front and entered into its arduous task in the Meuse-Argonne 
offensive : 

"Moving forward we arrived at our new position at noon on September 20th. And where do 
you think it was? Exactly on the southern slope of the famous Mort Homme (Dead Man's 
Hill), a hill on which we are told more lives were lost in one battle than in our entire civil war. 

"A cautious reconnaissance on the crest of the hill gave us a beautiful view of the country 
held by the Hun from the Argonne to the northwest around to the river Meuse on our east. Directly 
below us lay our own infantry lines and across the shell-torn ravine of Raffincourt were the Ger- 
man front lines. The Bois de Forges which was soon to be our objective loomed up as an insur- 
mountable barrier to the heights beyond. Where once had stood a prosperous little village, the 
remains of Bethincourt, marked the center of No Man's Land. There is nothing impressive 
about a battlefield. It is the most desolate looking thing imaginable. Not a sign of life, not a 
creature stirring. It was a beautiful day, but even the birds had long since evacuated. 

254 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

"But behind the hill, screened from enemy eyes, one received an awful shock, by contrast. 
Soldiers and officers were moving about everywhere, with instruments, plotting boards and chains. 
The unmilitary observer would think the army had suddenly turned to surveying or some such 
peaceful pursuit. Those countless men were the advance detachments of the hundreds of batteries 
that were to be in within the next few days. They were laying out traverses, orienting lines and 
locating positions on the map for the computations necessary for the artillery. Good Lord, what 
a hot time was in store for Jerry! 

"That night it rained. We knew in advance it was going to rain, because our batteries were 
coming forward. We had selected as a command post a dugout thirty feet under ground, damp 
and unventilated, but, as subsequent events proved, quite worth the discomfort. The next 
several days the artillery literally swarmed around the section. Dead Man's Hill became the 
most lively of places. Batteries of all calibres, from 75's to 220's appeared as if by magic. When 
one woke up in the morning there would be another battery crowding in beside you. There never 
had been such a concentration of artillery in one sector before. Even the French were astounded. 
We were now with the 3d Army Corps, U. S. and a part of the First Army. 

" For the next four days everyone worked feverishly, under camouflage by day and in the open 
by night. Ammunition was hauled up the hill by hand; emplacements had to be widened, and 
cover had to be constructed for the personnel of the guns. Never a shot was fired. We had no 
orders, but everyone knew what was coming, and everyone worked with his utmost speed and 
energy, and each night found a new regiment moving in. Then the infantry began to move up 
and we sat tight waiting for the order. When a hostile plane flew over during the day, the hill 
presented an aspect as dead as its name. As soon as it had been driven off the ravines and sur- 
rounding hills were seething with activity. It was amusing as well as interesting to see the way 
the game was being played. 

"And then, at 10 o'clock on the night of September 25th, the captains were assembled in 
the Colonel's quarters. We were told that H hour would be at 5.00 o'clock on the following morn- 
ing; that we would begin firing at 3.00 o'clock and fire until H hour; that the back areas would 
be smothered by our "Heavies" during the night; that the infantry would go over at H hour. 
Of course we had been given our objectives several days before. Intent on our several missions 
we started back for our command posts. The night was as quiet as usual, not even the rattle of 
a machine gun bi'oke its death-like stillness. We looked at our watches, having just synchronized 
them with the Commanding Oflicer. It was two minutes to eleven. We waited. At exactly 
eleven o'clock a terrific bombardment from our rear was begun. The distinct booming, followed 
by the screeching of the heavy projectiles as they passed us en route, became more and more 
intense. The G. P. F.s and Longs had begun the party on schedule time. From then on one 
could not hear himself talk, and the medium and light guns had not begun. All night long this 
serenade was kept up. 

"From 1.00 o'clock we "stood to." At 3.00 o'clock a shell went through the store room just 
above us, calibre 150, and blew up a box of "gold fish." At 4.00 A. M. we worked in gas masks 
for fifteen minutes. At 5.00 another shell blew our wireless aerials skyward. 

" That afternoon I was sent forward to reconnoiter for new observing stations nearer the retreat- 
ing Hun lines as they had passed beyond the range of our present observatories. I passed hundreds 
of prisoners being retui-ned fi-om the attack. The dead of course had not yet been removed and 
some grewsome sights were presented to the unaccustomed eye. Happily the American dead 
were far outnumbered by the Boche. In fact we lost very few men in the attack, as the artillery 
preparation was perfect. The Hun prisoners were absolutely terrified, pounded into complete sub- 
mission, by that tremendous demonstration. Our Infantry crossed the Forges Brook, mopped up the 
Bois de Forges, which had so long menaced their positions, took several small towns and brought 
up on the west bank of the Meuse, which seemed to be an insurmountable barrier. As I gazed 
upon the smoking, ruined country from the new observing station, the thought came to me, as 
it has come to thousands of others, that the Hun must be paid in full for the havoc he wrought." 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 255 


THE attack on the Hindenburg Line really began on the 25th of September, when word was 
passed to Colonel William B. Taylor that his regiment, the 106th Infantry, the old 14th 
and 23d of Brooklyn, had been chosen to start the big drive. The night of September 26th 
found the regiment moving along shell swept roads and passing through villages which were the 
last word in desolation and ruin, and airiving at its appointed position about mid-day. It was 
necessary that they begin to work and work fast, because orders which they had received said 
that the men must get into position at 4 .00 A. M. It was hazy, the fog beginning to rise about 2 .00 
A. M. The zero hour was set for between 4.00 and 5.00 A. M. and word came that the barrage would 
last about thirty minutes, after which the infantry would begin to advance. The other regiments 
moved up on the 27th and got into position on the night of the 28th. The attack on the 29th was 
opened by the artillery at 5.50 A. M. and they pounded away for fifteen minutes with a terrific fire. 
Then the tanks began to move out. It was dawn and fairly bright. Suddenly as the tanks began to 
mount what was known as Guillemont Farm, there was a flash of flame followed by a gigantic crash 
as the mines exploded, one after another, until nine of the tanks were removed from the battle line. 
Other tanks were smashed by direct hits from the big German guns. In all sixteen of the forty-five 
tanks that moved out that morning were destroyed in the first fifteen minutes. It was a sickening 
feeling that came to the Buffalo men when they saw that fearful accident, for they felt that inside of 
the tanks they would find nothing but the charred remains of those who had formed their crews. 
One of the Buffalo boys in the tank brigade that moved out that morning was Sergeant Frank 
J. Williams, .Jr., Company "C", 301st Battalion Tank Corps. Sergeant Williams was the only 
Buffalo man attached to that tank battalion. In fact, as far as is known, he was the only Buffalo 
man serving in the big tanks. They had what was known as a "Mark 5" battle tank, and were 
headed for the Knoll. They had been in action for about ten minutes when their tank was hit 
by a 5.9 shell, a direct hit. Six men in the tank were killed, the others badly wounded. Williams 
himself was terribly lacerated and it was feared for a long while that he would not recover. 
The following citation will serve to give some idea of his service: 

"Sergeant Frank J. Williams. Jr., Company ('. :il)lst Battalion Tank Corps, is recommended for the award of the Distinguished Service Cross 
in view of his conduct in action as noted below: 

"(a) September 29th. 1918, from 5.50 A. M. to 11.00 P. M. 

"(6) East of Ronssoy Map 'Etaves' location F-12-c. 

'* (c) The attack was directed against the Hindenburg line in front of Le Catelet. It was made by the 27th Division American E. F. supported 
by 301st Battalion Tank Corps. 

" id) The operation was the assault upon the trench system east of Ronssoy. 

" ie) Sergeant Williams was in a tank under the command of Lieutenant H. E. Potter when it was put out of action by a direct hit from enemy 
artillery. Every one in the tank was either killed or disabled by wounds. Lieutenant Potter was temporarily blinded and was badly injured, and 
Sergeant Williams, although seriously wounded, himself, assisted in dressing his wounds. He then remained with Lieutenant Potter all day 
attending to his wounds while under heavy fire from an enemy trench that lay between them and our first line. When it became dark he assisted 
the Lieutenant back through the German position to our lines. If it had not been for the attention that Lieutenant Potter received he would 
probably have died from loss of blood and he would certainly have been taken prisoner as he was helpless. 

"(/) These facts came under the observation and have been verified by a verbal report from Sergeant Charles E. Kaufman of Company C " 
301st Battalion Tank Corps, and the attached affidavit of Lieutenant H. E. Potter. 

"(g) Nearest relative Frank J. Williams, 261 Parkdale Avenue, Buffalo, N. Y. 

"lb) 1 am of the opinion that Sergeant Frank J. Williams, Jr., Company C, 301st Battalion Tank Corps, has distinguished himself by his extra- 
ordinary heroism in connection with the above military operation to an extent that justified the award recommended." 

Sergeant Williams was still badly crippled at the time he was returned to Buffalo after his 
discharge from the service. 

The Hindenburg offensive proved to be one of the most notable battles in which the American 
forces participated in France, and is particularly interesting to Buff"alonians became of the large 
number of Buffalo men engaged. 

The series of operations by the British and French between July and November, 1916, com- 
monly called the battle of the Somme, so weakened the German front between Arras and Peronne 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 257 

that the German staff found it necessary to establish a new Hne from six to eight miles to the 
rear. It was constructed during the winter of 1916-1917 by the labor of prisoners and of French 
and Belgian civilians. This was called the Hindenburg Line. It ran from the region of Queant in 
a southeasterly direction, passing three or four miles southeast of Cambrai and directly east of 
Saint Quentin, to La Fere and the Oise River. Roughly the entire German defense line for 1917 
and 1918 came to be called the Hindenburg Line, but the portion described was the Hindenburg 
Line proper. It consisted of an elaborate series of deep trenches, protected by barb-wire entangle- 
ments and detached cement forts for machine guns, called by the soldiers "pill-boxes." In addi- 
tion, the Germans completely devastated the country from which they retired, destroying all 
villages and farms, cutting down trees and poisoning wells in order to make it as difficult as possible 
for the pursuing Allied armies to live in the abandoned country. This region had been cleared 
up by the British to the extent of rebuilding the roads and bridges and reopening water supplies 
by 1918; but in general the Hindenburg Line may be described as the most formidable system 
of trenches German ingenuity could contrive, facing an artificial desert, six to eight miles wide. 

The portion of the Hindenburg Line with which the 27th Division was concerned ran from the 
region of Le Catelet south to Naui'oy, a distance of about four miles. Here the basis of the Hinden- 
burg system was the Saint Quentin canal. Emptied of water, the canal made a wide and deep 
trench where thousands of men could be massed, secure from anything but direct hits by high- 
angle guns. At one place the canal tunneled through a hill and here the German troops were 
absolutely protected. Canal boats drawn into the tunnel gave them good housing, and no shells 
could reach them. 

In front, or west, of the canal the country for a width of one to two miles was seamed with 
infantry trenches, covered with machine-gun forts and obstructed by mazes of barbed wire. 
These obstacles had to be overcome before the canal itself, with its masses of German reserves 
and well-hidden artillery, could be reached, while still farther to the east were the long-range 
batteries from which high-explosive shells could be poured, not only on the attacking troops, 
but on their reserves and supplies miles in the rear. 

Ronssoy was the principal point where the 27th struck the outworks of the Hindenburg Line. 
Bony, Gouy and Nauroy are the chief villages on the line itself in the sector through which the 
Buffalo regiment and associates were to make their drive. 

On September 26th the Meuse-Argonne offensive had started with an artillery crash, the 
greatest ever recorded in history. The doughboys said the guns were "hub to hub" and 2,700 
of them were firing. 

On the same day the 106th Infantry of the 27th Division went forward to straighten out the 
line for the attack on Bony and the Hindenburg entrenchments. It was found necessary to take 
the outer defenses to prepare the way for the main attack scheduled for September 29th. General 
O'Ryan would have preferred to send his entire di\'ision in to clean up those defenses, consist- 
ing of the Knoll, Guillemont Farm and Quennemont Farm but General Rawlinson said they 
could not afford to have an entire division cut up before the main attack, and the 106th Infantry 
was sent in to do the job alone. They started at daybreak September 27th. The battle was 
terrific all day. 

Early on the morning of the 27th the 108th Infantry under orders from the Division Commander 
left their bivouac at Tincourt on a forced march along a railroad track to the front. No trains 
ran east of Tincourt. They camped that night on the side of a hill near Longavesnes and 
Villers-Faucon just back of the battle area. They had a march of about nine miles, and as they 
tramped along the road in the afternoon, the ambulances began to rattle back. Soon they met 
members of the 106th Infantry trudging back, some holding their arms with pain, another with 
a finger shot away, another gassed; these were the wreckage of the fight for the Knoll, or 
rather that part of the wreckage still able to make headway "under their own steam." 

" It's hell up there, " they told the Buffalo boys as they passed them on the road, but the "apple 
knockers" just took a tighter grip on their rifles and stepped out a little livelier than before. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 259 

The 106th Regiment had gone over at 5.30 A. M. behind a ban-age, but met stubborn resist- 
ance along the entire line and they had to fight every yard of the way. In spite of this, however, 
the Knoll, Guillemont Farm and Quennemont Farm were taken. Enfilading fire from the left 
made the position on the Knoll a veritable hell. The enemy counter-attacked and fought desper- 
ately in an attempt to recapture the heights. 

At 4 o'clock in the afternoon word was received that the Americans had been forced to with- 
draw. The New Yorkers quickly reorganized their line, however, and at 5 P. M. had regained 
possession of the Knoll in one of the bloodiest engagements of the war. Heavy fighting con- 
tinued throughout the entire day in and about Guillemont and Quennemont Farms, where isolated 
pockets of enemy machine gun nests fired into our lines from all sides, many of the enemy coming 
up in the rear of our troops through undergi'ound passages. 

During this preliminary engagement three officers and 250 Gei-mans of other ranks were cap- 
tured. A reconnaissance of the battle ground made after the fight showed that a large number of 
enemy dead were in the trenches, which was eloquent proof of the sanguinary character of the 
fighting. The number of German dead near the Knoll was enormous. 

Orders were dispatched to the Commanders of the 107th and 108th to relieve the 106th. Colonel 
Jennings' report of the operations of the 108th put in civilian language follows: From bivouac 
camp September 27th, on Ronssoy via Aizecourt, a march of about eight and a half miles. 
Bivouac was made just west of Templeaux Le Geurard on the afternoon of September 27th. 
Under above orders a representative of each company and battalion scout section reported 
at the 106th Infantry headquarters. It was impossible to arrange the details of relief at the time 
owing to the disorganized conditions existing in the line taken over. Routes were reconnoitered 
and all possible information gathered as to the location of units and headquarters which were to 
be relieved. 

At 2 A. M. September 28th, the march of the 108th Regiment was resumed, with the exception 
of the 1st Battalion and one platoon of the machine gun company which later were acting in sup- 
port. The march into the front line positions was approximately six miles, and was accomplished 
while roads traversed were under enemy shell fire, including high explosives, mustard gas and 
machine guns. A few casualties from shell fire resulted in the regiment. 

The 2d Battalion, plus one platoon from the machine gun company, one 37mm cannon sec- 
tion, and two trench mortar sections, moved into position via Ronssoy-Hargicourt Road, and 
Templeaux Switch Line, occupying trench lines. The 3d Battalion plus two sections 37mm 
cannon and four trench mortar sections, and one platoon from the machine gun company took 
position via the Ronssoy-Guillemont Road to Duncan Post. No representatives of the 106th 
Infantry being present to define the position, it was daylight before a complete occupation of 
the line could be made and contact gained on the flanks. This battalion suffered considerable 
from machine gun fire during the above period and several casualties resulted. Regimental Head- 
quarters was established in a double entrance dug-out, and the Regimental First Aid Post estab- 
lished about twenty yards from Regimental Headquarters in a dug-out which had a connecting 
passage to Headquarters. Immediately after the Regimental Sector was established combat 
patrols were sent out to gain contact if possible with detachments of the 106th Infantry which 
were holding isolated positions forward of the 108th lines. One officer and seven enlisted men 
of the 106th Infantry, all of whom were wounded, were picked up by an 108th patrol. Those 
patrols were strengthened dming the day by order of higher command and an attempt was made 
to secure the line which had been the objective of the 106th Infantry, in their attack of September 
27th. During the whole day of September 28th visibility was fair, it rained during the morning. 
The front line trenches were subject to considerable machine gun fire and the roads used by 
transports subject to shell fire all day, both high velocity and high explosive shells being used. 
Wire communications between Regimental and both Battalion Headquarters were frequently 
interrupted by hostile shell fire and it was necessary to use extra runners during the repairs of 
these communication lines. (Paul Bowen, a seventeen year old Buffalo boy, son of the managing 

260 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

Editor of the Buffalo Times, was one of the runners that day between Division and Regimental 

A conference of battaHon commanders was held about 6 P. M., September 28th, at which final 
arrangements were made for pegging and taping the departure line for the morning attack, zero 
hour was announced, supplies and ammunition checked, and a discussion held in regard to the 
timing, interval, distance, etc. of the barrage. Runners were sent out to inform the commanding 
officer of the 1st Battalion to take position. In the preparation for the morning attack all non- 
commissioned officers of each unit were informed of the attack to be made and were given detailed 
instructions as to the position of the departure line, etc. 

Owing to a persistent impression that remnants of the 106th Infantry were in No Man's Land 
along the lOSth's front, it was considered necessary to fix the barrage to start at a point about 
1,000 yards in advance of the line of departure. It is agreed by all observers that this great dis- 
tance between troops and barrage was in a large measure responsible for the severe punishment 
received by the first waves of the 108th; this because there were many enemy machine gun 
nests and outposts in the dead space between the lOSth's troops and the barrage. Also, because 
the enemy opposition had too much time to reorganize after the passing of the barrage. 

The 2d Battalion, 108th Infantry, encountered early resistance in the form of machine gun 
nests, which were broken up by outflanking and the use of hand grenades and rifle fire. The 
advance was then continued with little resistance until the remaining troops arrived at the first 
wire entanglements of the Hindenburg Line. 

At that point they met the full resistance of a fortified position such as the world had never 
known. However, by desperate fighting and on account of the fact that their tremendous barrage 
had opened devious ways through acres of barbed wire, portions of the 2d Battalion were able to 
establish themselves in the Main Hindenburg System. The position was held against severe counter 
attacks and enfilading artillery and machine gun fire from the direction of Bony, until reinforced by 
troops of the 2d Australian Division at 10.30 A. M., after which our troops, aided by the Australians, 
succeeded in cleaning up many enemy machine gun nests in that vicinity. Late in the afternoon 
the Battalion moved to the rear to reconsolidate on the original line and act as reserve. 

The 3d Battalion met strong resistance in the Guillemont Trench and Guillemont Farm after 
jumping off, and under diflRculty went over the top in good order, being organized and main- 
taining intervals between waves of 20 or 40 yards. The first wave was so cut up between this 
position and Claymore Valley by hostile machine gun fire and the enemy counter barrage that 
only a small portion were able to penetrate into Dirk Valley where they took cover in a sunken 
road directly in front of Bony. At that point they were also subject to such terrific fire from 
both machine gun and artillery that further advance was impossible. The situation was relieved 
by reinforcements from the 3d Australian Division at 5.30 P. M. Our troops aided the Australian 
troops in cleaning up a few enemy machine gun nests and assembled at 6.30 P. M. to begin their 
rearward march to reconsolidate on the original line and act as reserve. 

The 1st Support Battalion forming on the departure line immediately took their position as 
"Moppers Up" for the entire Regimental Sector and followed the advancing waves and support 
companies of the 2d and 3d Battalions by approximately 100 yards, raiding several machine gun 
nests with the aid of hand gi'enades, and gathering many individual prisoners of war who, under 
the confusion, became detached from the enemy ranks, as well as other escorted prisoners of war 
from the other two battalions. These prisoners were sent to the rear under guard and in many 
cases were used as stretcher bearers for the wounded. It was very difficult to keep platoons organ- 
ized due to the poor visability and the enemy counter barrage as well as machine gun fire from 
low fiying enemy aeroplanes. Here ends Col. .Jennings' report but he does not tell it all. 

Early on the morning of the 29th Corporal John J. Mattews of Company I posted his squad 
on a point near the sunken road leading to Bony and was walking back when a sniper from con- 
cealment shot him. Mattews, on the previous day, had mourned the death of Corporal W. A. 
White of the same company. The two men were close friends. On the 28th of September, White 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 261 

was engaged in straightening out the tape so that the 108th elements would go over unitedly. 
That night White did not return, and Mattews and some others had searched for him; not find- 
ing him they came to the conclusion he must have been hit. 

Going over the top the next morning, White's cousin. Corporal Henry Wehrum, found White's 
body hanging on the wire. While he had been at work the previous day, a high explosive shell 
burst over him filling him with shrapnel and throwing his body a mass of crushed flesh onto the 
wire entanglements some distance away. 

Shortly after he heard the news of the finding of White's body, Mattews, too, made the supreme 
sacrifice. The sniper's bullet was fatal. 

Another Buffalo boy of the 108th, Private Harry Goldie of B Company, was killed early on 
the day of the Hindenburg Line smash. Goldie had advanced less than 100 yards with his com- 
pany on the morning of the 29th, when a machine gun bullet went straight through his heart 
killing him instantly. 

An exceptionally sad occurrence on the 29th of September came in the death of Private Frank 
A. Malican. Men were falling fast on that eventful morning as the 108th went forward toward 
its first objectives. The machine guns of the Boche collected a heavy toll of gallant young Amer- 
icans. Malican, a member of Company A, was hit by a machine gun bullet. When hit his comrades 
say he made an effort to reach a shell hole but fell. No aid could be given then; it would have 
been useless, anyway, as Malican was mortally hit. A short time after the infantry had passed 
along, a detachment of the 102d Engineers came forward on a burial mission. They gathered 
up the bodies — those not blown in fragments — and laid them in rows preparatory to identifica- 
tion and proper burial under direction of the chaplains. Suddenly a member of the burial party 
stopped short and bent over a body. 

"God help us!" he said, half cry; half prayer. 

It was Engineer Malican who had stopped and turned pale. In gathering up the dead he 
had found his brother's body. In a few minutes he recovered his composure; aided tenderly 
in burying his brother, and then went forward again in the discharge of his duty to his coun- 

Captain J. W. Smith of Company I was killed early on the 29th. His company had advanced 
across No Man's Land. The Captain, having received final instructions, was hurrying forward 
to join them when he was hit by a shell from a trench mortar. The burying party under Lieu- 
tenant Elmer Brecht came across his body about noon, and recognized it from a ring and from 
his tag; his head was missing, blown off. 

The same morning about 10 o'clock Lieutenant Harold Mackay saw Lieutenant Kerr stagger 
and fall. To render what assistance he could to the wounded officer, and see that he was started 
back to the first aid station if not mortally wounded, Mackay started across a small strip of 
open territory to the spot where Kerr fell. Just as he reached the fallen officer, a rifle bullet 
pierced his heart and he fell across his comrade — dead. 

Boys became men rapidly that terrible morning as the Stars and Stripes went forward. Edward 
P. Pierce, a brave Buffalo lad, who had carried two or three wounded men into shell holes and 
laid them out of danger, was finally mortally wounded in the advance. His brave conduct was 
not unobserved, however, and the following citation was issued: 

"Private (First Class) Edward P. Pierce (deceased), Company D, 108th Infantry. For extraordinary heroism in action near Ronssoy. France, 
September 29, 1918. Private Pierce left shelter, went into an open field under heavy machine gun and shell fire, and dragged a wounded soldier 
to safety. This courageous soldier was killed while advancing with his company later in the action. Next of kin, George Pierce, father. Buffalo, 
N. Y." 

Private Kenneth P. Carter, a regimental runner, worked hard through the 29th, and while 
traveling through the shell-torn field with machine gun bullets from indirect fire falling around 
him he had many narrow escapes. 

Again on the 30th he made two trips to the front lines, and, about 7 o'clock in the evening, 
was making a third. As he was going through the wire he set off a mine which had been planted 
by the retiring Germans. He was blown high in the air and, of course, instantly killed. 

262 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

That night Sergeants John J. Boechat and Sergeant Harvey H. Geier were sent out to locate 
a dugout for regimental headquarters. They finally arrived at a pill box near Quennemont Farm, 
and when inside examining maps as to a good location for headquarters, the Hun gunners made 
a direct hit with a howitzer shell, killing them both. 

In his last letter home to his mother, Sergeant Boechat said : "We are on the eve of a big drive 
and that we will be successful, I am sure. I hope to come through it all right, but if I don't, you will 
know that I was there at the finish and you will have cause for pride and joy and not sorrow." 

On the morning of September 29th, Raymond McKnight of I Company received a machine 
gun bullet in the shin, but did not get off the field until evening. He had crawled to the protec- 
tion of a shell hole, but while laying there gas shells were falling around him and the gas filled up his 
lungs. As boys were passing him to the front they reported that he was full of smiles and shouted: 
" Go get 'em. " Shortly after he reached the hospital, pneumonia set in and caused his death. 

Private Benjamin Cohen, another Company I boy, who was hit by a sniper bullet, died in the 
hospital from his wounds. He was in a shell hole getting a bite to eat, when a sniper off on the 
side of a road got a good aim and the Buffalo boy went down. He died on October 23d. 

Corporal A. Nagowski, on that same day rushed out under machine gun fire and brought a 
wounded officer into a shell hole. He was hit with a machine gun bullet, but he saved the officer's 
life. His wound, while severe, was not fatal. 

First Lieutenant Delancey King was cited for extraordinary heroism that day in action near 
Ronssoy, September 29th. Lieutenant King was wounded early in the engagement, but he con- 
tinued to lead his men until he received a second wound. His gallantry under shell and machine 
gun fire, and his disregard for his own safety, furnished a splendid example to all ranks. 

Many Buffalo men other than those the details of whose deaths were related by comrades made 
the supreme sacrifice — the noblest sacrifice — when they faced the leaden rain across No Man's 
Land that day; others died of wounds, and more than a hundred Buffalo men were severely 
though not fatally wounded in that victorous drive. LIntil the blow arrived, however, they con- 
tributed immeasurably and valiantly to the crushing of the Hindenburg denfenses, and, when 
they fell, they fell facing forward. 

Many Buffalo boys won high honors in the Hindenburg battle. One was Private Harold L. 
Shipman of Company B, 108th Infantry. His comrades say that if Shipman had a few more 
days he would have licked the German Army alone. His citation tells the whole story: 

"Private Harold L. Shipman, Company B. 108th Infantry. For extraordinary heroism in action east of Ronssoy, France, September 29, 
1918. During the operations against the Hindenburg line. Private Shipman, a Lewis gunner, exhibited great courage and dash when a party 
of about 40 German prisoners seeing their guards Idlled by German snipers while going to the rear, seized rifles and opened fire on the Americans. 
Private Shipman rushed forward with his Lewis gun and put the entire group out of action. During the engagement he also silenced three enemy 
machine gun positions. Home address, Louise Shipman, mother. No. 60 Laforce Place, Buffalo, N. Y.' 

Sergeant John N. Bilitski, Company A, is one of the men of the old 74th who fought 
with the 108th in the attack on the Hindenburg Line, and won the admiration of the men of 
the regiment as well as the commendation of the regimental and division officers. He returned 
bearing a distinguished service cross. 

In a letter to his mother Bilitski said: "Mother, I was chasing them dirty Boche all over No 
Man's Land when I got a little hurt. It is not much." 

He was cited for "extraordinary heroism in action," and every man in his company said he 
deserved all that could be said for him. His citation reads: 

"Sergeant John N. F. Bilitski, Company A, 108th Infantry. For extraordinary heroism in action east of Ronssoy, France, September 29, 
1918. During the operations against the Hindenburg Line, Sergeant Billitski, although twice wounded, refused to leave the field, but remained 
with his platoon, exhibiting magnificent courage and bravery until he was wounded a third time. Home address, Mrs. Florence Bilitski. wife. 
No. 21 Olga Place, Buffalo, N. Y." 

Sergeant Edward Duncan, A Company, picked up many of the Buffalo boys who were falling 
on the 29th as they approached the Hindenburg defenses. Like Lieutenant Mackay he risked 
his own life repeatedly to aid some companion who had fallen. Mackay met death while so engaged, 
but Duncan was in luck and escaped. He never tired, however, and kept his men going forward, 
while he aided the wounded when they fell. On two occasions that day he found his lines so 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 263 

depleted from injuries that he was forced to reorganize the squads, which he did in an effective 
way, and proved one of the valued leaders in taking the regiment up to and beyond their objec- 
tives. For his work that day he was cited for bravery. His citation reads: 

"First Sergeant Edward A. Duncan, Company A, 108th Infantry. For extraordinary heroism in action east of Ronnsoy, France, on Sep- 
tember 29, 1918. During the operations against the Hindenburg Line, Sergeant Duncan displayed great gallantry and courage by going forward 
under heavy shell and machine gun fire and bandaging the wounded and bringing them back to our lines. Throughout the engagement he exhib- 
ited a fearless disregard of the enemy's fire and performed valuable service by organizing new squads when his company was suffering heavy casu- 
alties as a result of shell and machine gun fire. Home address: Mrs. Ellen Duncan, No. 681 McKinley Parkway, Buffalo. N. Y." 

During the morning of September 29th from the hour that the Australian artillery put up the 
barrage until the early part of the afternoon virtually all means of wire communications were 
interrupted by hostile shell fire. Visual signaling was not practical with the forward positions 
because of the dense fog that hung close to the ground. It was therefore necessary to rely on the 
runners for message service. 

The tanks assigned to the 108th in that attack were put out of action shortly after zero hour 
(5.30 A. M.) as it afterwards proved they were good targets on the skyline for the enemy artillery; 
almost no assistance in wiping out machine gun nests was rendered by the tanks. 

Two companies of the 108th, one under Second Lieutenant Samuel A. Brown, Jr., of James- 
town were the first to reach the Hindenburg trenches. The 30th Division on the right had gained 
its objectives, but on the left the English 17th Division was stopped, leaving the left flank of 
the 107th Infantry (27th Division) exposed and causing the line to stretch diagonally across the 
front. The 107th was subjected to a furious bombardment from artillery and machine guns in 
Vanhuille, which village had not been taken. On the following day an Irish Division was put 
in and this town taken, two battalions of the 105th were put in to assist the 107th and the Divi- 
sion gained its objectives. 

Though the 108th Regiment had fought a terrific battle over a bitterly contested field from 
early morning, they were not ready to rest when the Hindenburg Line was pierced. 

At 5.30 P. M. a runner came forward with an order reading : "Objective reached. Rest." 

They sent back word: "Rest, Hell! Give us a barrage." 

And they got a barrage behind which the Hindenburg Line received its final smash. The 
Americans and Australians had gone through. 

Although, as Col. Jennings in his report says, "The 108th was ordered at 6.30 P. M. to go 
back in reserve, many membei-s of the 108th, in the confusion and enthusiasm of the occasion, 
fought on with the Australians for two or three days." 

264 Buffalo's Part in the World War 


American E. F., France, October 22, 1918. 


To: Commanding Officer, 108th Infantry, U.S.A. 

Subject: Commendation. 

1. Now that we have inspected the captured defenses of the Hindenburg Line, the magni- 
tude of the task assigned this division in the attack of September 27th-October 1st becomes 
even more apparent than it then appeared. In the main attack on September 29th the 108th 
Infantry held the right half of the divisional front of 4,000 yards. The attack was made against 
what was. probably, the most highly organized system of field defenses ever constructed. 
That the 108th Infantry, after practically all of the tanks had been put out of action, should 
have broken through the maze of wire that e,xisted, and in the face of machine guns firing from 
every trench and nest, lodged one battalion in the main position, now seems an extraordinary 
feat. That this battalion, having gained the main position, should have captured prisoners 
equaling in number its own strength at the time, and for two days and nights have withstood 
bombing attacks and repeated counter attacks supported by artillery, at the same time keeping 
its prisoners in subjection, is more extraordinary. 

2. The valor of officers and men of the 108th Infantry on that occasion and the determina- 
tion and accomplishment of the battalion referred to, will furnish regimental history for all 
time. As one captured German officer said, "If you can break through the tunnel sector of the 
Hindenburg Line it will be impossible to construct any defenses to stop you." 

3. Since that battle the division has been fighting and marching almost continuously. On 
the 17th instant the 108th Infantry was one of the two regiments of the division upon which 
the task was imposed of forcing the crossing of the Le Selle River. In anticipation of this 
attack the regiment was directed to raid the enemy for the purpose of determining his strength 
and securing identifications of the enemy units opposing them. This raid was brilliantly exe- 
cuted by Lieutenant Christ R. Fritz and a small detachment of your regiment, which resulted in 
the capture of over twenty prisoners. On the 17th instant your regiment with the 105th Infantry 
overcame all of the difficult features of the ground and in the face of heavy machine gun and 
minenwerfer fire supported by artillery, forced the crossing of the Le Selle River and success- 
fully assaulted the heights on the other side. 

4. Following this operation the regiment fought almost continuously during the advance 
of the division and played a prominent part in the capture of Bandival Farm, the town of 
Arbre Guernon, the farms of Jonc de Mer and La Rue, and the forcing of the enemy beyond 
the line of the Canal De La Sambre. 

5. The valor of the officers and the men has at all times been exceptional. In spite of the great- 
est hardships and the continued strain, they have maintained the highest standards of discipline 
and cheerful determination. The record made by the 108th Infantry during the recent opera- 
tions would indeed be hard to equal. 

John F. O'Ryan, 


Buffalo's Part tn the World War 



DON Martin, the Buffalo newspaper man, did not send many letters home during the months 
of August and September. He subsequently explained in a letter to his daughter that he 
had been working so hard following the American advance that it was difficult for him 
to obtain time to wi-ite personal letters. 

The last letter his little girl received from him was dated the 29th of September, shortly after 
the Meuse-Argonne offensive began and when the handwriting on the wall foretold the coming 
of the end. Martin was then leaving for Montfaucon, which was captured September 27th, the 
day after the American "hop off" on the Meuse-Argonne front. His letter follows: 

"Bar le Due, France, September 29, 1918. 

My Dear Dorothy — I have been chasing around from place to place during the last three weeks and have done 
nothing much but write, travel and sleep — and of all the writing not a single letter was to you. Well, no one else 
got any letters from me during that time either. I haven 't received any mail from anyone for quite a while, but it 
is due to the fact that my address has constantly changed and mail has difficulty in finding me. I went from Meaux 
to Nancy where we had fine headquarters and where the correspondents all had good rooms. I knew it was too nice 
to last. First thing we knew we were notified to be ready to leave at once for 'somewhere west.' We packed up 
enough belongings to carry us through four or five days and at night we put off here — one of the quaintest old towns 
in France. Rooms had been engaged and such rooms as they were! The town is packed full of officers and soldiers 
and most of the houses are closed because of the frequent air raids of a few months ago. I slept one night in a quaint 
dingy hotel called the Rose d'Or, but it was too dismal for me. The next day I managed to get a room in the leading 
hotel of the town — the Metz — which is not such a bad place. I have electric light in my room, but no heat. You have 
read about the American offensive west of Verdun. That is what we came over here for. I have been all along the line; 
have seen our boys in action and have seen thousands of German prisoners. Yesterday, I went through part of the 
Argonne Forest, which is one of the best known forests in France. Germans and Americans are fighting there now. 

"I have been out every day since I arrived here — a week ago — and expect in a little while to start out in an auto- 
mobile for Montfaucon. a town captured from the Germans day before yesterday. You can look it up on your map. 
It was a place about as large as Fredonia. 

"The Americans are still fighting all along the line, but it is a queer kind of fighting. The two armies can't see 
each other. The Germans hide themselves in woods and villages and use machine guns. The Americans sneak up 
on them the best they can. 

"The war is coming along pretty well. Tell Uncle Rock that. The Germans are on their way home. There is no 
doubt of it. They will go slow, but they will never make another advance. America has done it by giving the Allies 
the preponderance of men. Just now, interest centers in Bulgaria. If Bulgaria really gets out of the way it means 
that Turkey will have to get out also and that Germany's end will be brought much nearer. I have seen thousands 
of German prisoners lately and know that their morale has lowered. In fact, I think there is just a possibility that the 
war may end this winter." 

Four days after Don Martin despatched that letter to his daughter he was on his way to Paris 
a very ill man. He arrived there on Friday, October 4th, and went to the Hotel Crillon where 
his physician advised him that he needed a rest. Don said he felt seedy and tired. During Satur- 
day his fever rose to a high point and on Sunday he was taken to the American hospital at Nevilly 
where he died at twenty minutes past nine on Monday, October 7th, 1918. 


He took the simple words we use 

And shaped them with his art 
In wondrous imag'ry to show 

Poor France's bleeding heart. 
He made us hear beyond the sea 

The roar of flaming guns. 
And feel the nameless agonies. 

Inflicted by the Huns. 

Enfold him with the starry flag; 

He died in imiform, 
A stormy petrel of the press 

Who loved the battle storm. 
Salute him with your lifted swords. 

Ye Allied fighting men, 
Don Martin was a soldier, too — 

A soldier of the pen. 

— Minna Irving. 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 


■^"%* *■ 

Don Martin at Quentin Roosevelt's Grave 

Inscription on left corner was placed by German airmen when they buried Lieut. Roosevelt 
Large cross erected by American Red Cross 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 267 

Don Martin was 47 years old. Native of Silver Creek, he was in reality a Buffalo man and 
the distinction he achieved will be listed for all time as the distinction of a Buffalo newspaper 
man. Somehow or other, when leaving for France he appeared to have a presentiment that 
possibly he would not come back. It may have been a natural thought which came to every 
man who embarked for overseas duty. "May be," he said to a Buffalo friend in a sanctum of 
the paste pot and shears, "May be I won't get through with it, but I hope all the old fellows 
will think of me as always trying to turn out straight copy. " He took the soldier's risk of bullets 
and disease to send his paper straight copy. 

Floyd Gibbons, of the Chicago Tribune, who was with Martin at the front has given us an 
interesting picture of Martin as a war correspondent which will serve to keep the record straight. 
Gibbons wrote: 

"It is one of the unexplainable tricks of fate that a man of the fearless spirit of Don Martin should die in France 
in this year of the great war as a victim of disease. 

"Don Martin, when marked for death this year, deserved a soldier's grave on the field of battle. In his death 
American newspapers lose a capable, conscientious informant, and American journalism suffers the loss of one of 
its finest exponents. I have ridden the front of France with Don Martin. I have been with him under shell fire and 
have observed his coolness in advanced positions when withering barrages of indirect machine gun fire speckled the 
ground close by. 

"One day last May I was in a dugout in a front line playing checkers with Don Martin, when suddenly a terrific 
concentration of enemy shells landed near by. The ground shook. Loose earth tumbled down from the roof of the 
shelter, the air trembled and the candle — our only illumination — was extinguished by the blast. By the time I had 
recovered my breath Don, sitting on a box on the other side of the table, had relighted the candle and I heard him 
say in his cool, even voice: 'It's your move.' 

"In the first days of June, Don Martin was the last American correspondent to leave Chateau-Thierry as the 
Germans entered the north side of the town. On July 21st, when the Germans were forced to evacuate Chateau 
Thierry and subjected it to a terrific long range bombardment, Don Martin rode back into the town with the first 
American troops. In the fighting along the Marne, the Ourcq and the Vesle, Don Martin daily and nightly followed 
the American advance, close on the heels of the retreating enemy. He visited the front lines every day and more 
dangerous than that, he had to run the double risk of transportation on the roads up to the front lines and back. 
Twice his automobile was damaged beyond repair by shell fire, but these incidents never seemed to prevent him from 
getting another car and going over the same ground the next day. 

"During the cold and rainy season and the heat of the summer this intrepid journalist braved all kinds of weather 
to serve his readers. He competed physically with men who possessed much younger bodies, but none that had a 
younger mind. I have seen him returning at night to the correspondents' headquarters, sometimes with his face 
pinched with the cold, sometimes soaked to the skin with rain, sometimes covered with the mud of the trenches, 
sometimes with his face blistered from the sun and the wind and covered with the gray dust of the road — I have 
seen him return dog weary and tired and forswear his dinner hour in order that he might transmute into despatches, 
the human news stories that he had gained at first hand along the fronts that day. 

"Don Martin, above all, was human. His pockets were always full of cigarettes when he went into the front line, 
and always empty when he came out. He liked to talk to our American soldiers like a daddy or a big uncle. In addi- 
tion to his own work he wrote many times to their fathers and mothers telling them that their sons were alive and 
in good health. In action he used to take care of our wounded, giving them water or making them more comfortable 
on the stretchers. When ambulances were scarce he used to transport them in his automobile. 

"Don Martin did more than write about the war, he was living the war and fighting the war every day and minute. 
He was a real fellow. Of the eighteen original accredited correspondents at the American front, Don Martin, Green 
and I are the only three who are not on the job to-day. As certainly as I expect to return, so surely do I feel that 
Don Martin from the spirit land will observe and report from above the triumphant entry of our troops into Berlin. 

"The men who wear the green brassard in France feel deeply the loss of a true comrade." 

Martin's death was mourned throughout the land. The President, Cabinet members. Senators, 
Judges, the leading representatives of business and the professions down to the humblest in all 
the walks of life who had come in contact with him paid tribute to his successful career and Buffalo 
newspapermen may be relied upon to keep green his memory. 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 









In the Rigging of the "Mary Alice," S. P. 397 

turned to the Brooklyn Navy Yard to have the 
ship put into commission with ceremony. She 
was then known as S. P. 397 (submarine pa- 
trol). We took charge of a fleet of Submarine 
Patrol Chasers and Patrols at White Stone 
Landing, New York. This was to guard the 
Hudson from submarines. We continued that 
work until about the middle of July. Then we 
were ordered to Bridgeport, Conn., doing con- 
voy out of New London, Bridgeport and along 
the Atlantic Coast. We would escort convoys 
to probably 100 or 200 miles out to sea and 
turn back, leaving the convoys with destroyers 
and battleships. 

EARLY in October, 1918, occurred the de- 
struction of what, in the earlier days, had 
been one of the best known inland water 
yachts,— the "Mary Alice" of Buffalo. The yacht 
was previously owned by William J. Conners, 
owner of the Courier and Enquirer. When the 
Government demand for ships became urgent 
shortly after the outbreak of the war, the Buf- 
falo yacht was turned over to the Government 
and became the "U. S. S. Mary Alice — Sub- 
marine Patrol No. 397." 

Robert G. Fitzpatrick, first class fireman, of 
357 North Oak Street, was assigned on Decem- 
ber 13th to the "Mary Alice" and was aboard 
the boat when she went down. Speaking of his 
experiences he said : 

"We spent considerable time at the yard in 
fitting her out for the high seas and then made 
a trial trip. On completing our trial trip we re- 

The " Mary Alice" Heading Out to Sea 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 269 

"On October 5th, 1918, we received orders to take the Submarine 0-13, one of the latest 
of our Government, just completed, out for the final test dive. All the submarines must make 
these test dives to a depth of 200 feet before the Government will accept them. The sailors 
who make these test dives are allowed $100.00 for each dive to that depth. 

"The 0-13 had orders to make her final dive and we accompanied her out the Sound and we 
stopped; the Navy officials boarded the submarine and then returned to our ship and we stood 
by watching her when she submerged. She made her dive in good shape and in coming up struck 
us mid-ship, cutting the condenser in two and the ship commenced to settle immediately. The 
accident happened about 2.02 P. M., and she disappeared at 2.10. It was only possible to launch 
one of the life boats and the life-belts in the fore part of the ship were beyond reach, so the crew 
took our life belts in the aft. 

" I could not get up on deck right away because I had to shut off the fires and look after the 
boiler to prevent her from blowing up. By the time I got up on deck there were no more life 
belts and the life boat was launched. I looked about for probably a minute and the aft of the 
boat was high in the air and I decided to jump so as to try to get away from her and clear the 
suction when she finally went down. I did this and remained in the water for 1 hour 40 minutes 
in all, with a sea running of about 20 feet. The submarine crew were busy baihng their own boat 
as her nose was crushed considerably. There were many things floating on the water as is usual 
when a boat sinks, such as Japanese cots, which are supposed to float many hours. I found how- 
ever that mine sank immediately after I tried to get some support from it. I then tried to get 
on a huge vegetable box and this also sank. Finally I got on a large plank which helped to keep 
me up. 

" Rear Admiral Gill, an elderly man, was also in the water with several other men. The sub- 
marine stood by however and succeeded in picking us up, even though the sea was continually 
covering her and I got hold of one of her lines, and, though continually washed up against her 
side, we helped to drag the Admiral out of the water. After we were all aboard it took consider- 
able work to bring the Admiral around. 

"The sub crew took us back to Bridgeport, Conn. On our arrival there we were wrapped in 
blankets, put in taxicabs and rushed to hospital. The Admiral died four days later of pneumonia 
and I also had the flu and pneumonia in addition to injuries I received by leaping into the water. 
I was then taken to Base Hospital 2, Black Rock, Conn. From there I went to the Rupture 
and Cripple Hospital in New York City. Then back to Brooklyn Navy Hospital and into the 
Federal Rendezvous where I received my discharge December 31st, 1918, at 8.00 P. M." 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 

77th division BEFORE GRAND PRE 

DESPERATE fighting filled the time of the other units of the 77th Division while the Whittlesey 
crew was holding its place on the hill far in advance. The Lost Battalion alone had gone 
through on October 2d. On the 3d the Germans held their line. That Buffalo Draft Division 
attacked on the left and then on the right. They attacked in the morning and in the afternoon. 
In an attack by the 2d Battalion of the 305th at 4 o'clock on the afternoon of the 3d more than 
200 men were lost. The Americans gained some distance each time, but it could be measured 
by yards. Similarly slight gains were recorded on the 5th and 6th, but on the 7th the German 
line cracked. The 77th had filled the open spaces of the Argonne with their own and German 
dead, but proved their calibre as a combat division. They had cleared the northern end of the 
forest by the 9th of October in the second phase of the drive. 

No little credit for the work through the Argonne must go to the 302d Engineers. A substantial 
detachment of engineers broke through with the infantry on September 26th, cutting wires, and 
remained constantly with them in that line of work throughout the entire engagement. The 
remainder of the regiment repaired roads and repaired and operated for a time a German light 
railway system, which they found in the forest. This road was used for transporting food and 
ammunition forward and carrying the wounded back. It was one of the captures made by the 
77th which proved exceptionally useful. The roads through the forest were very poor, and much 
difficulty was experienced in getting artillery through. The heavy rains made the roads next to 
impassable and greatly hindered the Division's progress. 

On the approach to Grand Pre October 14th, the Buffalo boys in the 77th experienced another 
bad day and left many comrades on the field. The Engineers did as remarkable apiece of work 
in that effort as was recorded by any engineering force at any time in the struggle. The Boche 
made his last stand in the second phase of the Argonne offensive at Grand Pre. 

Having located the German defenses, the 302d Engineers were sent out on the 15th of October 
to construct two bridges across the Aire River in the direction of Grand Pre, working under a 
heavy fire of high explosive and gas shells. They completed the job, lost a large number of men 
in the enterprise, made possible the advance of the 77th on the road to Grand Pre, and crowned 

the first phase of their trip through the Ar- 
gonne with a wonderfully courageous and com- 
mendable achievement. For their work on that 
occasion the Engineers received a shower of 
distinguished service citations. 

Up to that point several Buffalo boys had 
been killed. Private Robert S. Beyer, 349 Elm- 
wood Avenue, a member of the "Suicide Club," 
305th Machine Gun Battalion, was killed while 
carrying a wounded companion to the dress- 
ing station. Private Morgan of the 302d En- 
gineers was killed by a shell which wounded 
two other Buffalo boys. Sending back word 
from the hospital Morgan said: "Tell Maroney 
that I stood it like a Yankee should." The 
Maroney referred to was his " bunkie, " Private 
Edward Maroney, 302d Engineers. 

Lieutenant Wertz, Buffalo's first civilian sol- 
rouyh Buzancy dier Overseas fighting with the First Division, 

302d F.UKiK 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 271 

which relieved the 35th on the second day of the battle, was severely injured on October 9th 
while passing the St. Juvin Road near Sommerance. A machine gun bullet tore through his 
left lung, came out on his side and imbedded itself in his left arm. It was his second wound. It 
paralyzed his arm, and ended the war for him, but with a record which will stand as a monu- 
ment to him, to the old 74th, and to Buffalo for all time. 

During the second phase of the Argonne offensive, the Third Division which had made a wonder- 
ful record in the battle of the Marne, relieved the 79th Division. Leo Dombrowski, 7th Infantry, 
who had been in Belleau Wood with the Marines, and whose regiment had backed up the 30th 
Infantry on that eventful July day when they piled the Boche in the Marne River, was badly 
wounded by machine gun bullets. 

Arthur Spiess, Meech Avenue, another Buffalo boy in the 7th, fighting with the " Suicide Club, " 
the machine gun company, went down on the 21st of October in a gallant attack. Many months 
after the signing of the Armistice he was still undergoing treatment, but eventually recovered. 
He won high commendation from his company and regimental commanders. Writing from the 
hospital to his mother, sometime after he was wounded, Spiess said: 

"The old bunch of boys who were at Camp Green with me are pretty well shot up. Of the 
officers of our outfit — they're all gone. Jones was killed in the Argonne, Captain Reaney was 
killed on July 15th at the Marne, Lieutenant Chickering was killed in the Argonne; I liked 
"Chick," Oh so well! He was awfully good to me. Fritzell was wounded at the Marne, and 
McClune, who was made a captain after the rest were gone, was gassed in the Argonne. Lieu- 
tenant Long was hit in the head on the same day I was hit, and about a minute before. We had 
to fight like hell that day, for we drove a V into the German line and they came back, nearly 
surrounding us. They were shooting at us from the front, both sides, and almost to the rear. 
They sure did mow down our ranks. Long hollered to us as the Germans came rushing out of a 
bunch of woods to get in a shell hole and open on them. He just got done hollering when he 
went down. I had the gun and ran for a shell hole about ten feet away when a bullet hit me in 
the hip, and, a second later, I was hit right in the spine and that floored me. I went down like a 
ton of brick, and it felt as though hot irons were being run through me. I then tried to get up 
but my legs would not move. The Germans were finally driven back and late that night some 
of the boys from our company came back and got me. While I laid there the old shells hit all 
around me, twenty-five or thirty feet away, and the shrapnel would hiss by me with a swish. 
It sure is a great war." 

272 Buffalo's Part in the World War 


ON October 14th another division, heavily manned by Buffalo men, and carrying the hopes 
and prayers of many Buffalo homes, trudged its way up the Aisne River to a point near 
the junction of that stream with the Aire. This division entered the Argonne on the side 
of the French sector, passing along the road which led from Moncheutin and stepped into 
the fight at Senuc, just south of Grand Pre. The Senuc Road joins the Grand Pre-St. 
Juvin Road a little north and west of Chevieres. The 78th had made a forced march under 
orders to relieve the tired, weary and shell-torn, but victorious, 77th Division. Though 
excessively fatigued by a long march through the mud, the men of the 78th Division 
swung into the fighting line on the night of the 14th, and on the following night the relief 
of the 77th had been completely effected. The Division was commanded by Major General 

Just before going into the line that night. Sergeant Maurice Wall, son of .James B. Wall, former 
Police Commissioner, wrote a letter addressed to "Mother and Dad." Sergeant Wall was a 
splendid type of young American manhood. He left home as a private with the 311th Infantry, 
Company E, attached to the 78th Division, and rapidly advanced in the estimation of his superiors 
and associates as well as in rank. He went into the forest off the march that night somewhat 
fagged out, but ready to take his position in the front line. Preparatory to going in, he wrote 
home his last letter, saying, among other things: 

"We sure are seeing some great sights at present. We are going through territory which has been occupied by the 
Germans since the beginning of the War. They have put in a net worl< of narrow-gauge railways which seem to cover 
nearly the whole ground. A great many of these camps look as if they have been rest camps. They have everything 
for the convenience of the German soldier — canteens, barber -shops, theaters and plenty of beer and wine. A good 
many of the dugouts have shower baths and are equipped with electric lights. 

"When the American troopers went over the top they sure did give the Germans H — , As one German prisoner 
said, 'You fight too fast for us.' The boys over here seem to take this as a business proposition, something to be done 
and done quickly. They have practically driven the Germans from all their trenches, even the famous Hindenburg 
Line went like tissue paper, and now have them in the open. In a good many places they have a hard time keeping 
up with the fleeing Germans. 

"Just an idea as to how we are living. We have hiked about a hundred and thirty miles in the last thirty days. 
Out of this we were in the trenches eighteen days, so you can see we did some marching while we were at it. We have 
been sleeping in the woods the greater part of the last month. The boys have come in from hikes so tired 
that they would flop on the ground in a pouring rain and in a few minutes be fast asleep without a bit of 

"No doubt you think Fifth Avenue, New York, a very busy thoroughfare, but after seeing military traffic on the 
roads of France it would look like the Main Street of a deserted village." 

The 78th had marched most of the long, weary and mud-covered kilometers which marked 
the distance from the St. Mihiel front to its new positions. From the middle of September to 
October 14th, they were on the move or resting in the territory between the Aire River, along 
whose wooded and hilly sides the 77th Di\'ision was fighting its way, and the River Aisne along 
which the French Army had more easily moved. The 78th passed over the battle grounds but a 
few days in the wake of the fighting forces. 

Many other Buffalo boys wrote home on the night of the 14th. William E. Sawyer of G 
Company, 311th Infantry, in his letter stated that he had marched from 9 o'clock on the night 
of October 13th, arriving in the support lines at 2 o'clock on the morning of the 14th, and mov- 
ing up to the front early next evening. French weather, often disagreeable, was especially so 
at that time, and the rain had been falling heavily and steadily for two days. The men of the 
78th were drenched, but so tired they fell asleep in the mud when they reached the reserve line 
at 2 o'clock that memorable morning. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 


Buffalo and Erie L uuuti Uuji m i ui.i. 11.-. l. :.iar Chevieres 

On the road to Grand Pre, October 14. 1918, Men of E Company, 311th Infantry in the foreground resting 

For the first time since leaving Camp Dix the boys of the 78th Division saw their own artillery 
move in behind them. The heavies came into position on the night of the 14th, just south of 
Grand Pre, the citadel of which was held by the Germans. For three weeks the battle raged around 
that point; the advantage first resting with one and then with the other, but eventually swinging 
to the American troops when the Boche, under a terrific pounding, cut and ran for the Meuse. 

On the night of the 15th of October the 153d Artillery Brigade, 78th Division, laid down a 
barrage, its first in the Argonne Forest, and the doughboys went over the top. Along narrow 
paths and roadways and through the tangled bush they crept forward. Without the experience 
the 77th gained in its two weeks' drive through that underbrush their toll, on that first day, 
was exceptionally heavy. Machine gun bullets cut them down, but did not stop them. The 
311th Infantry, made the greatest progress, and stubbornly held its position. On the left Captain 
William Kaliska advanced his company of the 310th Infantry along the side of the road leading 
to Chevieres. Kaliska had been formerly, athletic instructor at Nichols School. He had secured 
admission to the officers' training school at Madison Barracks, won his commission, was assigned 
to the 78th Division, fought with them in the Vosges and at St. Mihiel, and was now a rattling 
good soldier through the heavy going in that black spot of the Argonne. Sergeant G. J. Eddy, 
Company H, 309th Infantry was one of the first Bufi'alo men hit that day. A machine gun bullet 
struck his shin. 

As the Germans retreated they set up and camouflaged innumerable machine gun positions. 
Every open forest space was covered with one or more guns, and the roadways fairly rang with 
the putt-putt-putt-putt-putt of the machine guns. It was a most difficult matter to get the 
artillery into play on the machine gun nests, and they had to be taken by direct assault and 
two-fisted fighting. 

On the night of the 16th of October, some units of the 311th had crossed the Grand Pre-St. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 275 

Juvin Road, and were heading north to the east of the town of Grand Pi-e. Other units of the 
78th Division were attacking through the town of Chevieres, and on the morning of the 17th a 
concentrated attack was made all along the line. Captain Kaliska was hit by a machine gun 
bullet early in the morning, and a number of other Buffalo boys were hit during the advance of 
the 310th Regiment that day. Kaliska continued at the head of his command, however, and 
captured several machine gun positions, from one of which he brought back seven prisoners, 
being awarded a Distinguished Service Cross. Later in the day he fell a victim to gas and frag- 
ments of a high explosive shell which peppered his legs. He recovered in a hospital in France, 
but was out of the war from that day on. Private Henry C. Stief was wounded about the same 
time when a high explosive shell hit among men of headquarters company. 

Sergeant Earl B. Searcy, Sergeant Maurice Wall and Sergeant W. H. Maxwell of Company E, 
311th Infantry found their men suffering severely from machine gun fire and pulled them back 
preparatory to organizing a systematic attack on the entrenched position. Company E con- 
tained many Buffalo men. In addition to those mentioned. Sergeant Harry J. McBride, Corporal 
Frank E. Rogers, Corporal George McDonald and privates Norman F. Woelfel, Howard Hoehn, 
.John Kriegler, Ralph B. Brown, Harvey Moss, Albert May, John Kwiatkowski, Benjamin Perez, 
Matthew Rohr, Alois Besstak, Walter Bebauer, Charles Griese, Frank X. Hilburger, Harry 
Lebert, William Kaufman, Edwin Loth, Simon Vouros, John Wagner, Alois Weckerle, Michael 
Zmozynski, Joseph Miller, Bugler Benjamin Borg and Cook Michael Sommerfelt, Buffalo men, 
were in the company. 

Sergeant Wall was in charge of the platoon, containing most of those men, and, when he ordered 
them back, he probably thereby saved many lives. Picking Searcy and Maxwell, Wall went 
forward on the right, endeavoring to flank the machine gun position. After locating what he 
believed to be the cause of the trouble, they opened fire and the advanced Boche were seen retreat- 
ing through the woods. Wall and his companions then went forward for a hand-to-hand tussle 
if necessary in mopping up, when the little group rushed smack into a gunner hidden in the brush 
who had remained behind for just such an attack. Wall fell at the first fire, but crawled under 
cover along with the other two sei'geants. They lay there for many hours, but their company 
had skirted this position and gone foi-waixl. Finally the Germans were driven out, but no one 
returned to pick up Wall until late the following evening. He had suffered severely from loss of 
blood and exposure, and died shortly after reaching a dressing station.* 

Private John L. Sullivan, a Buffalo boy, of B Company, 311th Infantry was killed in about 
the same sort of an operation on the same day. He was taken forward by Lieutenant Gardenier, 
with one or two others, in an endeavor to definitely locate a machine gun position. Sullivan 
"bumped" off one German who was firing from behind a bunch of brush, freshly cut, and was 
met with a shower of bullets but escaped injury. Presently Sullivan and his companion espied 
a machine gunner in a shell hole firing on members of B Company who were seeking to advance 

, „ „, X, „ *" France, November 27, 1918. 

Mrs. J. B. Wall, Buffalo, N. Y. 

"My dear Mrs. Wall: I am taking a liberty which I sincerely trust you will approve. When the enclosed letter (from Mrs. Wall to her son) 
came with Company mail, a few days ago, I opened it to make certain the sender was Maurice Wall's mother. I did not read it, but am returning 
it just as I found it, as the opening words answered my question. 

"I assume you have had word, before now, of the wound which your beloved son suffered on October 17th last. I was with him at the time 
hence this message to you, his mother. We have had a sad report as to the result of the wound, and my one hope is that Maurice did not pay 
the supreme sacrifice. As to that, the War Department has official records. My heart goes out to you and the Sergeant's family, for I can well 
know and understand how he must have been esteemed and beloved by all who knew him. 

"Maurice was in charge of the second platoon of Company E. I was second in command of the same platoon with him. We had had a verv 
tragic and trying day on October 16th and during the day of the 17th of October, tor we attacked a German machine gun stronghold at Chievres 
on both days. With Maurice in charge we were left to guide the destinies of the second platoon, and we fought on well until the time came to 
make a night attack on October 17th. The Company ran into a machine gun position, and before we could make good our escape. Maurice and 
I with half a dozen others of the platoon, were trapped at close range. We squirmed to the best cover we could find. While seeking better pro- 
tection beside me, Maurice received a wound in the knee. We couldn't give it first aid dressing here, for to raise our heads meant certain death, 
so we were forced to lie there motionless for many hours, before another attacking company drove the enemy away from his position a hundred 
"■■so feet in front of us. Maurice was living. I am told, when the first aid and stretcher bearers found him, but had suffered keenly from exposure. 
Word of his death has come to me. and 1 simply want you to know that I am unutterably sorry. Of course, as soldiers, we are taught to accept 
the ill fortunes of war stoically, but it is too bad a man of Maurice's mind and character had to be sacrificed under such circumstances. I enter- 
tain the faint hope that he yet lives, though our records, I understand, show differently. I lay beside him for five hours, then crawled back under 
cover of brief fog — at Maurice's suggestion — to attempt to organize an attacking party. Orders, however, contemplated a different move. 

Maurice Wall was a splendid chap, and a man liked and loved by our whole Company. I was intimately associated with him, and know 
what sort of a man he was. Moreover, he was nervy and courageous to the last degree. He wouldn't be frightened. I admired him and I can 
tell you that no one in our company performed his patriotic duty more cheerfully and fearlessly. 

" May I extend to a mother my sincerest and most admiring sympathy? 

Very truly. 

Sergeant Earl B. Searcy. 

276 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

across an open space on the left. The two boys went forward with a rush, but they were cut 
down with machine gun bullets. Both were fatally hit and died on the spot. The Lieutenant 
rejoined the company.* 

A number of boys from Lackawanna were in the same regiment, attached to Company F. 
During the fighting of the 17th-18th, Company F encountered stiff machine gun resistance. 
Private Michael Slovick, whose home is in Batavia, but who went away with the Buffalo outfit, 
tells a graphic story of that day's fighting! 

"That fighting sent west many a boy from Western New York, f was with the 311th Infantry, 
which had as its members many Buffalo and nearby men. The boys from Lackawanna suffered 
most. I don't know how many of them bled and died in the Argonne, but it was a lot. Alany 
of them were members of Company F. 

"We weren't fighting infantry, we were fighting machine guns and artillery. The Germans had 
the woods charted and they shot bullets into it at every angle. Some were aimed at men's heads, 
some at their bodies and some at their legs. Men dropped all around me by dozens and finally 
what seemed like a million bullets hit me all at once from my hips down, and down I went. 

" For twenty-six hours I lay in a shell hole in No Man's Land, without even first aid attention. 
Three times the Americans charged past me into the face of that terrible fire and three times 
they were driven back. Finally night came and with it the stretcher bearers. Several passed 
near me and I called to them, but they didn't hear me. I felt as if I were bleeding to death and 
the burning thirst caused by the wounds was terrible. Early the next morning the Americans 
drove the Germans back and my shell hole was soon behind our new positions. Soon afterward 
I was picked up and taken to a base hospital, where I got the finest treatment that any one could 
have asked for." 

Along the path away from the point where Slovick was hit, dead Boche blocked the road, 
showing how deadly had been the fire of the boys of Company F. Many bodies found in the 
woods afterwards had been pierced through by bayonets, proving the Boche had met death, 
also, in hand to hand fighting. 

On the morning of October 17th at daylight, the Division went over the top for the second 
time. The men left their shelter and advanced across the open to the Aire River, a small, swiftly 
flowing stream, waded the chilly, waist deep water and formed the skirmish lines on the opposite 

When the crossing had been successfully effected, they swept forward and on the heights ahead 
the Hun machine gunners could be seen in flight. After an advance of a mile or more, a lively 
fire was again encountered, making it necessary to seek shelter in shell holes. Throughout the 
remainder of that day the men lay huddled, cramped and chilled while machine gun bullets 
whistled over them and high explosive and gas shells landed nearby. Captain Henry P. Warren, 
Jr., the commander of E Company, while directing the operations of his men, was struck by a 
machine gun bullet which penetrated his steel helmet, inflicting a severe scalp wound. 

Among the other Buffalo boys who fell in and around Grand Pre were Sergeant Edwin H. 
Bauer, D Company, 309th Infantry. He entered the woods in a skirmish line. The underbrush 
was exceptionally dense at the point where they entered and members of his Company soon 
became detached from one another. Sergeant Bauer and one other were soon quite a distance in 
advance of the main body of their Company when they ran into a machine gun nest, and immedi- 
ately sought cover. Bauer tried to answer the machine gun with his rifle when a burst of machine 

* Lieutenant Gardenier writing to Mrs. Sullivan of her son's death said: "When a hail of machine gun bullets greeted us we dropped. Then 
we cautiously looked up in the direction they were coming from. 

"Private Sullivan said, 'There he is. lieutenant/ I looked and saw a German ducking down into a shell hole. I knew what was coming and 
said, 'Duck down,' ' IJuck down nothing,* he replied, 'I can get him.' 

"He opened fire with his automatic rifle. The response was another hail of bullets directly at us and both of the boys received fatal wounds. 
I gave Private Sullivan a drink from my canteen, but soon saw that it was all over and he made his peace with God and died with his hand on the 
gun he had fired to the last. 

"His memory will always stay with me. He was a man in the highest sense, unafraid, faithful and a soldier. I trust that the pride I feel for 
him will mingle with the sorrow of his loved ones and make their loss a sacred one, a sacrifice which follows those who make it and through which 
shines the glory of a noble gift to freedom. 

"I beg you to pardon this intrusion by a stranger into your intimate sorrow and I trust that what little I can say will to some extent serve 
to lighten the grief of those who loved him." 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 


gun fire struck him on the top of the head, killing him instantly. Leo Blaszkiewicz, 77 Gibson 
Street was killed that night while the Company was in reserve. He was hit in the chest by flying 

David S. Buchanan was one of the first Buffalo men in the 78th Division killed after that 
division had relieved the 77th. He was a member of E Company, 311th Infantry and while 
advancing with his Company at Chevieres on the 16th of October, was shot through the stomach 
with machine gun bullets. Private Norman Woelfel of 890 Broadway was near when Buchanan 
fell, but he said his comrade died before he could bring him first aid. Howard Clancy, of E Com- 
pany, 309th Infantry, 600 Hasten Street, was also hit that day and was taken back to a hospital 
near Apremont where he died on the 19th. He was buried at Apremont near the top of a hill 
west of the church in the orchard. 

Anthony Didley, a sergeant of Headquarters Company, 311th Infantry was killed on the 25th, 
just before dusk, while lying behind an embankment south of Grand Pre. He was struck by frag- 
ments of a high explosive shell. John F. Duggan of E Company, 311th Infantry, 358 Maryland 
Street, while advancing with his Company at Chevieres on October 16th, was shot through the right 
thigh by a machine gun bullet and died the same day. Anthony Ervin, E Company, 311th Infan- 
try, 457 Auburn Avenue, while advancing in attack at Chevieres was struck by a machine gun 
bullet which pierced his right groin. Private H. P. Hoehn of 149 Allen Street was nearby when 
he fell. Hoehn says Ervin died within a very few minutes after being hit. Frank Fronczak, 
Company M, 310th Infantry, 440 Ohio Street was also killed in that attack. He was shot through 
the head with a machine gun bullet and died in the arms of a friend from Port Washington, L. I. 

Norbert F. Hens, a Sergeant of Company H, 309th Infantry, 134 16th Street was in the drive 
at Chevieres all through the day of the 16th and on the morning of the 17th he was sitting in a 
dugout when a shell landed in the road about 6 feet from the spot where he, and a number of 


Shell Bursting Among Men of E Co., 312th Infantry, while Repairing Road Mined and Blown Up 

by Germans near Grand Pre 

278 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

others were resting. Private A. W. Kuch of Niagara Falls was sitting close to Sergeant Hens 
when the shell landed and states that Hens pitched forward into his lap. "I tried to get him 
to talk to me, but he was unable to do so" said Kuch. " I think he was dead when I carried him 
to the first aid station." Two days later, a friend of Sergeant Hens, Curtis T. Hibbard, Private 
of D Company, 311th Infantry of 98 Gelston Street, was killed on Farm De Lois, about 2 kilo- 
meters west of Grand Pre. He was hit by a sniper's bullet while his battahon was making an 
attack. Hibbard's body was not found until about ten days afterward. There was a bullet hole 
through the neck and it is believed that he died instantly. George J. Hildebrand, 453 Carlton Street 
was killed the same day when a high explosive shell landed at Brigade Headquarters. 

Louis A. Humbert, Private L Company, 311th Infantry, 133 Duerstein Avenue was killed on 
October 24th by a German shell which made almost a direct hit, tearing him to pieces. Soldiers 
who were near him say that very little of his body was found but what was found was buried 
back of Talma Farm on the hillside. Corporal W. G. Barlow, 38 Olcott place, this city was a 
witness to Humbert's death. 

Another Buffalo boy killed on the 16th was Frank J. Kaczmarek, Company C, 311th Infantry, 
458 Davey Street. He was struck in the body by a piece of high explosive shell while working 
on a dugout. M. J. Luber, Private, K Company, 310th Infantry, 30 Fougeron Street was also 
killed that same day. His Company had relieved a part of the 77th Division along the St. Juvin 
Road. Private Luber and the membei's of his squad were behind bales of straw along the side 
of the road. A shell landed in the straw pile and shrapnel filled Luber's two legs. He turned to 
Private James E. May of Rochester and asked him if he could see about how badly he was hit. 
May told him there were several shrapnel wounds in his legs. Luber made no other remark. 
He died ten minutes later. 

Corporal J. William Kellogg of M Company, 311th Infantry, 1754 William Street was instantly 
killed by machine gun bullet on the 25th of October while going over the top. At the time of his 
death he had charge of an automatic gun squad. Orrin B. Piper, G Company, 309th Infantry 
was another Buffalo boy killed on October 16th while attacking north of St. .Juvin. He was 
struck by shrapnel over the right eye and killed instantly. Joseph Sikora, Company L, 309th 
Infantry, 572 Amherst Street was killed in the same attack. 

Many other Buffalo boys were killed in the fighting between October 16th and November 6th, 
when the Division was relieved by the 42d Division north of Grand Pre on the way to Sedan. 
And many boys of this Division, who fell during the attack, later died of wounds. For example, 
Private William J. Finn, 109 Gordon Street, D Company, 311th Infantry, was not seen after 
the attack north of Chevieres on October 17th. Sergeant Breen of that Company later stated 
that he saw a man lying near the H Company P. C. (Post Command) who he believed was 
Finn. He said he saw his name on the gas mask. Breen stated the man believed to have been 
Finn was buried in the vicinity of the spot where he fell. Many boys were reported missing in 
action at that time, some of whom came back later on and others died either in prison camps 
or at hospitals back of the lines, but Grand Pre certainly proved a Buffalo sepulcher. 

Sergeant Walter E. Gies, a Buffalo boy, Company G, 311th Infantry went over the top with a 
squad that morning (October 17th) in advance of the Company to remove desti'uctive machine 
gun nests. His thrilling experience that day and on the subsequent day is told in a letter home, 
written by him October 22d. It was the first opportunity he had to write and it was his last 
letter home. He was killed on November 1st as his Company went over the top after the Boche 
just before the final rush of the Germans across the open space from the Aire to the Meuse. He 
was buried beside two of his closest friends on Hill 210 near Grand Pre. Sergeant Gies' letter: 

"The morning after our first night on the front I had the most thrilUng experience of my life. I was sent out with 
a patrol of eight men. After proceeding for about a mile in the front of our line across open country, we were fired upon 
from the top of a steep hill in front of us by two snipers. We returned their fire and started up the hill after them, 
but when we arrived at the crest of the slope, which proved to be a road, we found we had run into a machine gun nest, 
for the moment we set foot on the road they opened on us with one gun and we were forced to seek cover. He held us 
down with his gun and soon had another going from the opposite side of the road, so that we were subjected to cross-fire. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 279 

"In the meantime we were engaging him quite boldly also; but he had us in a bad place, and it wasn't very long 
before he had hit two of my men badly. Then he opened up with another gun from our right and rear, so that we were 
now getting it three ways. This last gun also cut off another of my men so that all he could do was lie flat in the hole 
he was in. In fact, I was out of touch with him and after shouting to him for about five minutes and receiving no 
answer, concluded he had been killed, and knew no dift'erent until he turned up back with the company next morning. 
I was thus left with four men and myself. 

" Hopeless odds against three machine guns and about five snipers. But the company was supposed to be following, 
and I expected every minute to see them coming across the open. I hated to give up the ground we had won, but 
after waiting and looking in vain for half an hour, and having one of the lads who had been hit at first hit twice again, 
I decided to fall back down the hill and take cover in an old farm house at the foot, about 600 or 700 yards away from 
the machine gun nest. 

"So I shouted to the boys to start and crawl for it, but previous to this I had sent one of the wounded men who 
could walk back to the company for help. 

"Well, when I got ready to back down the hill, after crossing the road, I found Jim Waldron so badly hit that he 
couldn't crawl out of the hole he was in, so I had to go back and pull him out. I told him to try and roll down, which 
he gamely tried to do, but had to give it up about half way. So I got him on my back and lugged him the other half. 
When he got into the house, we found four other lads, one of them wounded, who were from another division and had 
been stranded there from the night before when their company had pulled out. 

"Waldron was in awful pain and bleeding profusely, so, after posting sentries, I started in to dress his wounds. I 
found he had been hit twice in the body and once in the arm. I bandaged him as best I could, laid him on a bed and 
started to look things over." (He died in the hospital a few days later. — Ed. 1 " I soon had it impressed upon me that 
it would be impossible to get back before dark, as every time anyone showed themselves it provoked a storm of bullets, 
and to walk out carrying two wounded men would have been suicide. 

"There was still no sign of the company and by now I knew that something had caused a change of plans. I was 
between the devil and the deep sea. I couldn't leave and I was afraid to stay, for I thought every minute that Fritz 
would sneak down along the road (which we couldn't see from the bottom of the slope) and heave bombs on us. I don't 
know W'hy they didn't. 

"Well, along about 2 o'clock in the afternoon, we spied three men coming from our lines and when they got near 
enough I recognized them as one of our sergeants and two of our men. They had volunteered to go out and try and 
find us. We waved and shouted to them and they managed to get in O. K. 

"Sergeant Perry" (this Sergeant Perry, together with Sergeant Gies, and Corporal Conway of Ithaca, were caught 
in a machine-gun trap on November 1st, while leading an attack of the 4th platoon of G Company and all were killed. 
— Ed.) "told me the company would attack at 3.30, so we made a drawing, locating the guns I had run into and 
started a man back with it. He hadn't gone fifty yards from the building when a sniper got him in the arm, breaking 
it and putting him down, but he managed to stagger back to us after lying still for about fifteen minutes." (This was 
Jeremiah McAulifTe of Oneida, N. Y. Later on his arm was amputated, but he recovered. — Ed.) The other lad then 
said he would make a try and he got away O. K., but when he got back to the company it had been decided to call off 
the advance, as they had run into a barrage and couldn't come ahead without losing the majority of the company. He 
came back again with a message for us to come right in. This was impossible, as I explained before. 

"In the meantime, I was acting doctor again and I really am quite proud of the way I fixed that arm. It had a 
hole in it about two inches round and the bone was completely severed, for I could look right in and see it, and then 
put a bandage and splint on it, so that when it came time to move him he was as comfortable as one could expect. My 
next job was to improvise stretchers which I did by using two round poles, and folding a blanket around them for one 
and for the other I found an old bunk w'ith wire stretched over poles, which I cut out of a row of such bunks. 

"The other wounded man (the one we found in the house) had a bullet in his leg, but could walk a little so I figured 
with two men helping, he'd be able to make it, besides I didn't have men enough to man a stretcher for him. Two men 
can't carry a man for over two miles — that is what we had to cover to get back besides having to ford a stream waist 
deep and climb two banks fifteen feet or so high and which ran almost straight up. 

"As soon as it began to get dark, I got my patients on the stretchers all ready to pick up and step out with and about 
6.30 we set out and got back to our lines and company at about twelve. Take my word for it I never worked so hard 
in all my life or never was I so totally exhausted. I waded that stream about six times to get them all across safely, 
besides helping get each one up the two steep banks. When we turned up at the company we got some welcome for 
they had given us up as lost. Next morning I was routed up at 6 o'clock after about two hours of actual sleep for I 
only had one blanket and nearly froze with those wet clothes on but I never got a cold from it." 

Men of the 78th Division were enthusiastic in their praise of the work of Sergeant Gies, and 
returning soldiers were always ready to tell of his heroic acts. The death of this brave boy 
caused genuine sorrow throughout the entire regiment. 

In the cemeteries around Grand Pre many brave Buffalo boys are sleeping, and the ambulances 
carried hundreds of wounded men from that point. Every tree is stamped with an act of Amer- 
ican valor, and while Buffalo and Western New York men of the 78th Division were not aware 

280 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

of it at the time, they were engaged during those trying days from October 1.5th to 18th in smash- 
ing the western defenses of the famous Kriemhild Line, while the Divisions on their right were 
going through it. 

General Pershing said: "The Fifth Corps, in hand-to-hand encounters, entered the formidable 
Kriemhild Line, where the enemy had hoped to check us indefinitely, and the First Corps took 
Champigneulles and the important town of Grand Pre. Our dogged offensive was wearing down 
the enemy, who continued desperately to throw his best troops in front of us, thus weakening 
his line in front of our Allies and making their advance less difficult." 

Indeed, the German Army was pulling out of Belgium before the British and Fi-ench, but the 
Boche was being allowed to take his supplies and equipment with him. His was an orderly retreat 
when it should have been a rout. In fact, it had already become necessary to withdraw the 37th 
and 91st American Divisions from the Argonne to change the status of that retreat. Those two 
divisions were hurried north into Belgium and detrained October 20th in the neighborhood of 
Ypres. The Rev. Joseph A. Burke, a Buffalo priest attached to St. Vincent's Church, commis- 
sioned Lieutenant-Chaplain during the summer, was attached to the 91st Division as it started 
on that rapid mai'ch from Ypres to the front line near the Lys River at Passchendaele. Two 
Buffalo boys were then with the 37th Division: Irving H. Johnston, 147th Infantry and Victor 
Sweeney, 145th Infantry. They had come through the Argonne Forest fighting intact, but one 
fell before the Escaut River was reached. 

Sergeant Sweeney, while leading his platoon over the top on the first morning of the drive, 
was held up by a machine gun nest. Resting his men in a ditch he went forward through a turnip 
patch to reconnoiter, when a sniper in a shell-wrecked house dropped him with a rifle bullet 
missing his heart by inches only, the bullet passing out through his shoulder. This Buffalo boy 
had been put out of action in the first seven minutes of fighting. 

The 91st Division captured Spitaals Bosschen, a wood extending across the central part of the 
division sector. The 37th Division drove ahead rapidly, capturing many prisoners and much 
ammunition, forcing the retreating Germans across the Escaut, or Scheldt, River. On the follow- 
ing day, November 4th, the 91st Division took Audenarde. The French Army then took over 
the entire line, and the two American Divisions dropped back for a rest. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 281 



A FTER the 33d Infantry, for whom the old 65th Regiment was furnishing artillery support, 
ZA had cleaned up Forges, they received their new objectives, and proceeded to a point beyond 
-^ -^ Bethancourt, the Artillery to move up behind them. After a terrible night on the road, 
the Buffalo artillerymen got into position about 4.00 A. M. From then on, they fought through 
what was known as the first and second phases of the Argonne. Toward the end of the second 
phase, another Buffalo contingent the 77th Division, quite a distance west of the 106th, were 
taken back for a much needed rest, and for replacements. The 78th Division had taken over 
the position held by the 77th and were moving into Grand Pre, at the time the 106th, or old 
65th, was relieved after twenty days of hard fighting. 

Captain Gilchriese gives an historical record of the movements of the 106th from the time 
they left Forges on September 26th until they were relieved on October 19th. 

"We effected the passage through Forges without further adventure and arrived on the road 
to Bethancourt, — which was our destination — in good order. And here the trouble began. The 
traffic was absolutely and completely tied up. Convoys going in both directions on the same 
narrow, muddy road were in hopless jams. From 11 o'clock until four A. M. we urged, ordered, 
begged and pushed wagons, limbers, trucks, ambulances and nondescript vehicles, all in a con- 
glomerated mass on the narrow road to Bethancourt. The American Army was advancing and 
had to be supplied. These drivers had been working, some of them for forty-eight and seventy- 
two hour stretches without rest, and they still had hours of endless toil ahead of them if their 
organizations were to be fed. Infantry going forward to the lines cheerfully stopped to give us 
whatever aid they could in moving mired carriages, but the situation looked hopeless. How- 
ever, by almost superhuman effort, the men pulled, pushed and drove their teams as they never 
had before, until by squirming, squeezing and praying, we worked the guns through the mass 
and pushed them into position shortly before 5 A. M. and just in time to fire an accompanying 
fire of 200 rounds per battery, in support of an attack by our infantry. 

"The days following were not pleasant ones. There were no prepared emplacements or dug- 
outs to be had here. We were in the ravine of Raffencourt; low, muddy, swampy and pitted 
with shell holes. This ravine had been the scene of many a bloody conflict during the battle of 
Verdun, and for the past two years it had lain midway between the lines — a place shunned as a 
gas hole. The few deserted dugouts we were able to find were low ceilinged, damp and unpro- 
tected except against splinters. 

"On October 8th, we spent a whole morning making careful adjustment on strongholds around 
the well fortified Bois de Chaume. That afternoon at 4 o'clock we delivered a most tremendous 
and concentrated fire on sixteen targets in this area at the conclusion of which the 29th Divi- 
sion, which we were supporting, stormed the heights and carried the Hun into the depths of Bois 
de Consenvoye, beyond. This had been one of the hardest positions east of the Meuse, up to 
this time, that our doughboys had been called on to take. On our left the 80th Division was 
fighting, with bull dog tenacity in the terrible woods of the Argonne; directly in front of us our 
own Division — the 33d — was endeavoring to cross the Meuse. 

"The little town of Sivry-sur-Meuse was still in enemy hands and in the belfry of its church 
the deadly Hun machine guns enfiladed the flanks of our infantry as they advanced to storm the 
heights of Bois de Chaume, another hard nut for the doughboys to crack. We were constantly 
being called on to fire on the church tower, which presented quite a target, until one day we 
were ordered to destroy it. Now that would have been an easy matter for the Hun, but it was 
an entirely new experience for us. Casting religious scruples to the winds, however, we went 
after it with a will. It was only after we were well launched on our mission that we were ordered 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 283 

to cease firing. I have since seen that belfry and although the dead Jerries had been removed, 
the bits of metal, brick and equipment told the story better than anything or anybody on the 
spot could have done. Several holes of 155 calibre dimensions in the tower itself showed that 
our adjustment was well under way. 

"Having driven Jerry from his much coveted positions east of the river, we were compelled 
to move forward again — he having moved beyond our effective range. On the night of October 
15th in a driving rain we moved out, our destination being a position near Gercourt. It was 
only a matter of 8 or 9 kilometers but on what a terrible hike. In mud all the way and over a 
road ordinarily bad enough due to hills and shell holes but on this particular night hellish. By 
10 o'clock in the morning all the batteries were not yet in position. The visibility was so poor, 
because of the rain and clouds in the morning that we could not be seen from the German lines 
although they were plainly visible not very far distant. The battalion headquarters was exceed- 
ingly fortunate in finding a German battery emplacement, which was soon converted into a com- 
fortable room. But not so with the batteries. They had not even a piece of elephant iron for 
protection against the elements. 

"But everyone set to with a will and in a couple of days, dugouts were well under way and 
emplacements being perfected. Several batteries of G. P. F. construction (these are long guns of 
the same calibre as ours) were in position around us. Every time one of them fired it shook our 
whole establishment, and this they did quite frequently to the immediate discomfort of Jerry. 
We fired several important missions from this position, participating in the general melee of 
artillery attack on Jerry's Gisehler-Stellung and his best Sturm battalions. Every night was a 
regular fireworks celebration. The spiteful barking of the 75s, followed by their swishing, re- 
echoing, shrieking as they tore over the woods in front of us; the sharp report of our own guns; 
the mighty bellowing of the G. P. Fs, all intermingled in a tremendous roaring which resulted in 
a wonderful symphony, nightly, but which must have made the Hun feel terribly shaky. It was 
during these days that we began to receive his propaganda, dropped during the night from air- 
planes, asking us what we were fighting for and telling us that Germany had acceded to all our 
demands. Our answer was characteristic. It usually took the shape of what the newspapers 
term, ' Increased artillery activity. ' 

"On the 20th, just as we were becoming accustomed to our new surroundings, and getting 
accurately adjusted on the enemy positions, we were ordered to move as the Division was being 
relieved. The fact that it was raining did not add to our happiness, nor that our march was a 
matter of 40 odd kilometers back to the echelons in the rear. 

"Then a long, wearisome hike. From 'neath the shadows of Montfaucon, that stronghold which 
defied every attack of the Allies for years, back through the devastated ruined villages of Ger- 
court, Driencourt, Bethancourt, in a blinding rain, with the night as black as the shadows of 
Hades. Our orders were to clear Montzeville by 6 A. M. If this should become impossible, as 
it was, we were to park along the roadside under cover during the daylight hours and await the 
coming of night to resume the march. The batteries moved separately. Battahon headquarters 
pulled out at 5 A. M. and as the visibility was still very poor continued the march until noon. 
It was a cold drizzly morning as we swung into the battered village of Bethancourt. And there 
we were confronted with a surprise. Only a few days before we had left this region, and now 
upon passing it we saw hospitals for miles, sprung up as though over night. Was this unmistakable 
testimony of the terrible fighting that had been waged on our left in the woods of the Argonne? 
Fresh plots of graveyards were springing up all over the country and even as we passed, burial 
parties were hard at work in several of them. It was a sight which brought sadness to the hearts 
of more than one man in that column. We had gazed upon German dead by the scores— some 
of them horribly mutilated— without the slightest qualm, but the sight of American lads who had 
so heroically sacrificed their lives on the altar of Democracy brought a choky feeling to the throat. 

"But this was not far enough from the battle front. The next night, or rather that night, 
October 22d, we moved out again, our destination being the Bois Chene Gosson, whatever that 

284 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

means. But "mirable dictu," it did not rain, nor were the roads bad. In fact they were excel- 
lent. Leaving at 6 P. M. we had covered the 16 kilometers by 11.30 and without losing a single 
animal. It was a wonderful moonlight night and the men actually were cheerful as we rolled 
along that most famous of highways, Verdun-Metz, under the shadows of the protective trees 
bordering the road. As we neared Verdun an occasional whine of an enemy shell was heard, but 
this only amused the men. One particularly unrestful Austrian heavy kept at this method of 
harassing during the night. Pulling up under the shadow of Fort de Rugret, we halted for a 
short rest and then turned south toward Dugny. Arriving in our new woods south of Dugny we 
immediately went into cantonments. It was quite a pleasant change, this finding a roof all ready 
to welcome you. 

"But Dugny, that pretty spot with its gorgeous scenery, its pure fresh air and its exquisite 
weather, was not to be ours for long. We got a much needed scrubbing, took rides unmolested 
by the screeching of Hun shells, ate bread with butter on it and even had jam occasionally. Then 
came the order. They always come just when you are getting comfortable and familiar with 
your surroundings. We were to go forward this time in support of the 79th Division and once 
more take our place in the battle front of the Meuse — this time on the eastern bank in the vicinity 
of Brabant. On the 28th of October we moved out, returning first of course to our old friend 
Bois la Ville." 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 



AS soon as the Hindenburg Line had been broken and the canal was in the possession of the 

ZA Alhes the Australians relieved the 27th Division on the British front. That occurred on 

■*- -*- September 30th. That is, they officially made the relief, but it was several days before the last 

of the Americans left the front lines. So enthusiastic were they over the fighting that they kept 

on with the Australians. 

Lieutenants Brown and Uhl of the 108th had held their position in the German trenches with 
more officers and men prisoners than their own strength numbered. Despite the necessity of 
guarding these they had repulsed repeated counter attacks endeavoring to dislodge them. 

The Signal Corps got a wire to the trenches a few hours after the infantry had gained a foot- 
hold. When the Australians relieved our men the following day, the officer in command tele- 
phoned back that the Americans were there but wanted to continue with them. Their request 
was communicated to General O'Ryan. 

"I can't imagine that they will be any good; they must be all in after what they have gone 
through," he said. "See if they really want to go on." 

Map showing part taken by 
107th and 108th INFANTRY. 27th DIVISION. IN 

Forcing the Crossing of La Selle River 


and advance beyond 

October 17-20. 1918 
Scale of Miles 

286 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

"Yes, sir, we want to keep on" came the answer. "A lot have been wounded, but they all 
want to stay. " 

In that stretch of fighting the 27th Division sustained about 4,000 casualties in killed, wounded 
and gassed. The Division went back for a rest in the Bois de Bier, while the Allied forces poured 
through the break which had been made in the Hindenburg Line. 

Nor was the Boche in position then to rush any great number of reserves to that front. The 
American Army was coming through the Argonne Forest and sweeping along the Meuse over 
ground which the German commanders believed even moi'e secure than the St. Quentin canal 
sector. To add to the troubles of the Kaiser's army, the Second American Division with its 
fighting Marines struck the line south of Laon near Rheims and prevented the withdrawal of 
troops from that sector to aid either in the Argonne or at St. Quentin. Of the attack made by 
the 2d Division, (with more than 250 Buffalo men) General Pershing said: 

"On October 2-9, our Second and Thirty-sixth Divisions were sent to assist the French in an 
important attack against the old German positions before Rheims. The Second conquered the 
complicated defense works on their front against a persistent defense worthy of the grimest period 
of trench warfare and attacked the strongly held wooded hill of Blanc Mont, which they captured 
in a second assault, sweeping over it with consummate dash and skill. This Division then repulsed 
strong counter attacks before the village and cemetery of Ste. Etienne and took the town, forcing 
the Germans to fall back from before Rheims and yield positions they had held since September, 
1914. On October 9, the Thirty-sixth Division, relieved the Second and, in its first experience 
under fire, withstood very severe artillery bombardment and rapidly took up the pursuit of the 
enemy, now retiring behind the Aisne." 

Early in October the Allied advance on the St. Quentin sector had slowed up and the 27th 
and 30th Divisions were again in demand. They were brought up to Le Selle River, and between 
October 12 and 14 the 27th was put in the line at St. Souplet. The Division, by daring preliminary 
raids, terrified the enemy into thinking it was many times its actual size. 

On the 17th of October, again at the point of the wedge, the New York Division went into 
and captured the town of St. Souplet, forded the Le Selle River and forged on beyond the high 
railroad embankment, taking on this one day 1,400 prisoners, aside from an almost unbelievable 
number of machine guns, a railroad train consisting of an engine and fourteen coaches and a 
large amount of other material. 

The battle, fought in the early morning, had been preceded on the 14th day of October by a 
daylight raid. The raid was a remarkably planned and executed affair, demonstrating the valor, 
intrepidity and exceptional efficiency of the American Army. It was deemed desirable to obtain 
a number of German prisoners for informative purposes and volunteers were asked for to make a 
foray on the enemy lines and bring back twenty prisoners. 

The 108th Infantry furnished the raiding squad, among them John J. Crotty of Buffalo, a 
corporal of Company D. The men left the lines under the protection of a barrage which was to 
lift for a period of five minutes during which time the raiders were to enter the enemy line, secure 
their prisoners and get back again before the barrage fell. Not a man was injured in the exploit. 
For their gallant work the entire squad was cited. Crotty's citation follows: 

To Corporal John J. Crotty, Company D, 108th Infantry. 

Your gallant conduct in the Field on October 14, 1918, at St. Souplet, France, in voluntarily serving as a member of a small raiding party 
which crossed the Le Selle River and in the face of heavy fire, captured 23 prisoners, has been reported to me, and I take pleasure in commending 
and making this record of your gallantry. 

In the Field, France, (Signed) John F, O'Ryan, 

November 1. 1918. MajoT-Genfral Covimanding. 

On that battlefield the Division Commander impressed his will on the enemy so completely 
that the victory was unqualified. 

In front of the 27th Division on that occasion were the German 204th Infantry Division, the 
243d Infantry Division, the 3d Naval Division, the 24th Infantry and the 15th Rifle Division. 

The battle of Jonc-de-Mar Ridge was fought on the following day. It was also a prepared 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 

attack and resulted in taking a large number of prisoners, machine guns and materials, and an 
advance of several kilometers by the 27th Division, which took its objectives in the face of terrific 

It is a notable feature of the fighting of the New Yoi'k Division that, in company with the 
30th American Division, forming the Second American Corps, it was always at the point of the 
wedge which was being driven into the enemy's strongholds. The 27th Division, throughout the 
war, was used as shock troops and was hurled against the line where the enemy and his field 
fortifications were the strongest. These two divisions took 6,000 prisoners, one-eighth of all the 
prisoners taken by the American Expeditionary Forces in France. 


Prisoners of War Captured 16 officers, 594 men 

Machine guns Captured 33 (various types) 

Casualties for the period were as follows: 

Enlisted Men 


September 2Hth 
September 27th 
September 28th 
September 29th 
September 30th 
October 1st 
Officers . . . 
















E. S. Jennings. Colonel. 

While the 108th was on its way to St. Souplet it was billeted for a while at Escaufort. On 
midnight of October 13th the tired boys went to bed early. A shell struck one of the billets in 
which they were sleeping, injuring several men and instantly killing Corporal Jack R. Rickets 
while he slept. His body was filled with shrapnel. 

On October 18th, the St. Souplet operation was in full swing. The boys had been fighting their 
way through a mud hole, battling along under severest weather conditions. Private Stewart W. 
Martin, of Company A, somewhat in advance of his company was hit with a large shell which 
landed at his feet. He was blown to pieces. A little later the same day, I Company found itself 
without a leader; the officer who had been assigned to the company was looking over his maps 
as the line moved out; Private George A. Eberle stepped up in the absence of the officer, took 
command of the boys and led them over the top. They fought through many a tough place 
with the young private undauntedly and courageously leading them forward. A machine gun 
bullet nipped his shoulder. A moment later several members of the company went down behind 
him from the enemy fire. Finally, Eberle was hit in the side by a rifle bullet, but he refused to 
leave the field. He di-opped, however, before the objective was reached and died from his wounds. 
Another private took the remnants of the company forward to the objective. 

Private Joseph E. Lutz, Company G, was hit the same day and courageously went forward 
until he fell from exhaustion. The first machine gun bullet hit him in the shoulder; the second 
opened a bad scalp wound. He was unattended for some little time after he fell, and died in the 
hospital on October 27th. 

One of the Buffalo boys who went through the heart of the Hindenburg stunt and also the 
fighting at St. Souplet was Corporal Joseph Yund. He passed safely through every battle in which 
the 27th Division participated, returned with the Division to America early in March and was 
sent to Camp Merritt awaiting the date for the divisional parade down Fifth Avenue. While 
the regiment was in France Yund was offered an assignment as cook but declined it to remain 
on the field with his company, where he was frequently admired for his coolness and courage 
under fire as a Non Commissioned Officer. While at Camp Merritt he died suddenly of acute 
indigestion less than ten days before the regiment was mustered out of service. 

Another strange case was that of Sergeant Chris K. Redden, who virtually led the Machine Gun 
Company of the 108th through all its fighting in France. A few days after the discharge of the Regi- 
ment and the return of the boys to Buffalo, Redden fell down stairs at his home and broke his neck. 

288 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

The old 74th saw service in three battles, three major engagements and two minor engage- 
ments. Its activities with the 27th Division may be summarized briefly as follows: 

Battle of Hindenburg Line near Bony, France, September 29th and 30th, 1918; a prepared 
attack with the 3d British Corps on the left and the 30th American Division and the 10th French 
Army on the right, and the Australian Corps and the 9th British Corps participating. Opposed 
to the Americans was the German Second Guard Division, 232d, 54th, 185th, 121st and 75th 
Infantry Divisions. 

Battle of Le Selle River, near St. Souplet, France, October 17, 1918. The 3d British Corps, the 9th 
British Corps and the 10th French Army participated. Opposed to the Americans were the German 
204th, 243d and 24th Infantry Divisions, the 3d Naval Division and the 15th Rifle Division. 

Battle of Jonc de Mer Ridge, near Arbre Guernon, France, October 18, 1918. The same Allied 
forces participated and were opposed by the same German divisions. 

Major engagement of Vierstraat Ridge, near Mt. Kemmel, Belgium, August 31 to September 2, 
1918. This was an advance to occupy this ridge and Mt. Kemmel, the enemy keeping up rear 
guard actions. The 34th British Division and the British 2d Army participated. The German 
236th, 8th and 52d Infantry Divisions opposed. 

Major engagement of the Knoll, Guillemont farm and Quennemont farm, near Bony, France, 
September 27, 1918. This was a prehminary fight by the 106th Regiment to gain the outworks 
of the Hindenburg Line, preparatory to the following grand attack. They were unassisted and 
the German 54th, 121st and 185th Infantry Divisions, the 75th Rifle Division and the 2d Guard 
Division opposed. 

Major engagement of St. Maurice River, near Catillon, France, October 19, 20, 1918. This was 
an advance following the two days' battle cleaning up the machine gun nests to the river. The 
British 3d and 9th Corps participated. Opposing were the German 204th, 243d, 24th Infantry 
Divisions and the 15th Rifle Division. 

Minor action of East Popei-inghe line, Belgium, July 9 to August 20, 1918. This was the prep- 
aration of the second line of defense behind Mt. Kemmel in anticipation of the German attack. 
Artillery fire was constant. Various divisions of Prince Rupprecht's army opposed. 

Minor action of the Dickebusch sector, Belgium, August 21 to 30, 1918. This was when the 
Division was moved to the front in anticipation of the same attack. The .same German forces 
were facing them. 

The regiment was in reserve when the Armistice was signed. 

BxjFFALO's Part in the World War 289 


BUFFALO was well represented in the fighting which carried the battle line across the Meuse 
at Sedan and ended the war. Lieut. Col. Donovan's 165th Regiment had .swept over the last 
remaining hills on the west side of the Meuse, and the 77th Division, with its hundreds of 
brave Buffalo boys, crossed the river in the same territory a little to the south of Sedan. 

In the drive toward the Meuse about the middle of October Colonel Donovan fell on the hill- 
side seriously hurt by a machine gun bullet which tore through his knee. The American forces 
at that time were lacking in experienced leadership and the loss of the Lieut. Colonel was a hard 
blow to his men. Though suffering intense pain and in need of immediate medical care, Donovan 
refused to leave the field, but continued directing the battle from a dugout with fearless runners 
carrying messages to his majors. He described those late October days in a letter to his wife, 

Wednesday, October 23, 1919. 

"A machine gun bullet at the knee just below the joint. A clean wound through from front to rear. A hole in the tibia — 
a splinter from that hole extending downward for two and a half inches — in bed in a Paris hospital. There you have it. 
American Red Cross No. 3, Jp Place Chevreuse. 

"I wrote you last, did I not, from the Bois de Montfaucon? We were suddenly ordered forward to relieve another 
Division, the 1st. The same old jumble of troops and camions and trains on the road, only now the roads more slippery 
and more in need of repair. Our way led past freshly killed and yet unburied Germans, through unmistakable smell 
of dead horses to a farm in a valley where we parked our wagons and disposed of our men. The farm house had been 
used as a dressing station for one of the regiments of the other division. Outside was a huge collection of torn and 
bloody litters, broken salvaged equipment, reddened underclothing and discarded uniforms, all of our own men — • 
the cast off of the dead and wounded. Within, however, was a nice fat Y. M. C. A. man in a suit of blue overalls 
and a sombrero. He was in attendance at a big cauldron of cocoa while on a stand beside him was bread and, best 
of all, beef. There could have been no better meal. They then arranged a bed in one of the ambulances into which 
the Colonel and I crawled. I slept until 6 and then met the Battalion commanders and their company commanders 
and went forward for a reconnaissance. We met the liaison officer of the other division and he apportioned the various 
liaison agents to our groups. I talked with the Colonel of the 18th and took over his cellar for our colonel. Then I 
went up to the position we were to occupy. 

"The division preceding us had a terrific fight just three days before and the ground was a stew of dead — Boche 
and American. One attack had evidently been made in the morning mist and as it cleared an entire company was 
caught on a little rise. The bodies were laid out in rows. It was easy to determine the formation and the plans of the 
different leaders. In one hole we found a wounded German who had lain there three days afraid to come out — • 
in another, a wounded German and wounded American who had crawled to the same hole, shared their water and 
cigarettes, and then, rolling into the German's blanket, had gone to sleep. If we read that in a story book we would 
not have believed it. I then went over the position. 

"The support line was in rear of a long ridge running some 3 kilometers. This was the ridge the Germans had 
held commanding the valley. I went to their machine gun positions. Gun after gun was there with the gunners 
lying beside them, dead. From these positions I could look back across the valley and then it was easy to see how 
heavy a toll could be demanded for entrance there. Over this ridge and into the next valley. Here the Germans 
had a prison camp. The shacks of the officers had been on the northern slope of the ridge and had evidently been 
well equipped. Now they were shell broken, full of gas, and in pitiful disorder. Near some of them were the bloody 
torn bodies of what were evidently orderlies. In the valley itself were the prison buildings similar to all such in all 
armies. The wooden shacks with bunks and small bit of land enclosed with barbed wire some ten feet high. On the 
other side of the valley were two knolls which were the westerly continuation of the ridge you have read about as 
the Cote de Chatillion. This was our advanced position. 

"That afternoon we commenced our relief and at nightfall I went up and established my Post of Command on 
the long ridge. I slept two hours that night under a shelter tent and except for a few telephone interruptions had 
a good rest. With the telephone lying beside you it is not bad. I was on, as were all the men, the reverse slope, well 
under the top. Our only danger was from splinters. Up here we pulled all the kitchens and were set. 

"Two nights of this and then early on the morning of the 14th we received orders that the attack would be made 
in the morning. There was a multitude of things to do and the orders coming so late they could not be done properly. 
The brigade on our right was to advance first, all the guns being concentrated to assist it. Then two hours later all 
the guns were to concentrate to help us. The party started. I moved to the forward position which they were shelUng 

290 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

heavily. I could see no advance on our right. Our hour struck and promptly the leading battalion moved out. The 
Germans at once put down a heavy barrage and swept the hill we had to climb with indirect machine gun fire. The 
advance did not go well. There were green company commanders with the companies; liaison was not maintained; 
the barrage was not followed closely; there was not enough punch. There were times when I had to march at the 
head of the companies to get them forward. They would follow me. New men need some visible symbol of authority. 
I could see nothing coming up on our right or left. They were crowding in, the resistance was becoming stronger. 
The preparation had been hurried, proper instructions had not been sent; officers had been killed or wounded, N. C. 
Os. the same; vast quantities of new untrained elements. We fought our way to within 500 meters of the line. You 
know the Germans were entrenched with three parallels of wire and a position they proposed holding. The attack 
as is always the case, finally languished. I sent for another battalion. It was late in arriving and in coming into 
position. Not until 8 P. M. did I get it across, but it too was beaten back. Orders then came to stabilize for the 
night. I was in a little shell hole with my telephone operation. For mess I had an onion, which was delicious and raw, 
and two pieces of hardtack. At 1 A. M. the telephone went out and it was impossible to get in touch with the rear. 
Patrols were sent out to tie with elements on our right and left. I knew an attack would come in the morning, but 
I had no orders. I did not know how or where it would be launched, what artillery preparation, nothing. The night 
passed only too quickly. I sent back for food but the lieutenant with his party never returned. Ammunition came up 
and then at 6.20 the orders for an attack at 7.30. With such short notice it was impossible to get proper word to 
all units and to make the best disposition. A heavy mist was hanging. I went around to the men and talked to 
them. All of this was close to the German line. We had gained two kilometers the first day, the 14th, I should not 
have been there but remained so because it would have had a bad effect on the men if I had taken position further 
in rear. 

Tanks were to be near to help us. Zero hour came but no tanks, so we started anyway. I had walked to the dif- 
ferent units and was coming back to the telephone when — smash, I felt as if somebody had hit me on the back of the 
leg with a spiked club. I fell like a log, but after a few minutes managed to crawl into my little telephone hole. A 
machine gun lieutenant ripped open my breeches and put on the first aid. The leg hurt, but there were many things 
to be done. The tanks then came along the road but almost immediately turned back either on account of smashed 
mechanism or wounded drivers. The situation was bad. There was more defense than we thought and the battalion 
wa.s held up. Messengers I sent through were killed or wounded and messages remained undelivered. We were 
shelled heavily. Beside me three men were blown up and I was showered with the remnants of their bodies. No 
communication with the rear as the telephone was still out. Gas was then thrown at us, thick and nasty. Five hours 
passed. I was getting very groggy but managed to get a message through, withdrawing the unit on the line and 
putting another in place. Then they carried me back in a blanket. I told them to put me down but they said they 
were willing to take a chance. It was a tough hike. At last the shelter of a hill. I turned things over to the major, 
turned in a report, and then was taken on my way to the hospital.* 

"I will tell you in detail just what is done with human baggage from the first aid station on. 

"At the battalion first aid station they tied a tag to me — 

Lt. Col. W. J. Donovan, 

G. S. W. right knee, 

Corbet, M. O. 

meaning I had received a gun shot wound in the right knee. From there I was carried on a stretcher about 1 ' 2 kilo- 
meters to the Regimental dressing station where my wound was dressed and I was placed in an ambulance. A tough 
3 kilometers ride over shell-torn roads to the Field Hospital. I was hauled out and placed on the ground. It then 
being determined that there was no immediate need of an operation I was sent on to the Mobile Unit. This was 
about 4 kilometers further .back, and all these rides were damned uncomfortable. 

*Washington, June 4th t Associated Press). — A bronze oak leaf cluster, to be worn with the distinguished service cross already awarded him, has 
just been awarded to Colonel William J. Donovan of the 165th Infantry, whose home is at No. 734 Delaware Avenue, Buffalo. The announcement 
of the War Department to-day states that the award is made for extraordinary heroism in action near Landres and St. Georges, France, October 
14-15, 1918. The distinguished service cross was awarded Colonel Donovan August 28, 1918. In explanation of the award of the oak leaf cluster, 
the War Department said: 

"Colonel Donovan personally led the assaulting wave in an attack upon a very strongly-organized position and. when our troops were 
sutTering heavy casualties, encouraged all near him by his example, moving among his men in exposed positions, reorganizing decimated platoons 
and accompanying them forward in attacks. When he was wounded in the leg by a machine-gun bullet, he refused to be evacuated and con- 
tinued with his unit until it withdrew to a less exposed position." 

From Buffalo Courier, March 9, 1919. — "There is no braver man in the army than Colonel Donovan." said Lieutenant Betty, "and he is no 
'dugout commander,' but a man who took his medicine. I went out from the United States as a casual officer and was later assigned to the 165th 
Infantry, and was at Colonel Donovan's side when he fell. 

"It was on the morning of October 15th, and we were looking at a map of the battlefield. The tanks were coming up and it was the attack 
on the German's last line. We were pushing them back. 

"A Hun machine-gun sniper got Colonel Donovan in the knee. The bullet made a terrible wound and he went down, but at once rallied 
despite the pain. 

"We wanted to carry him back to a dressing station, but he refused to go. We coaxed him to no avail. We could see he was suffering, but 
he just would not give up. Finally, after five hours of the lighting, during which he was directing his troops all of the time, he consented to be 
taken back. Even then he went away on the stretcher protesting that he ought to stay. 

"Since that I have seen him once in a hospital in Paris, and. of course, have heard he is back with the troops." 

From New York Heralel. — "Colonel Donovan," said Sergeant O'Brien, in discussing his old commander, "was, in my opinion, and the opinion 
of every man in the command, the finest soldier in France. 

"Other men may think it was Pershing or General Foch, but I will always hold to my opinion. I was in the old regiment for a number of 
years, and went through the entire training period with it at C'amp Mills, and was in every 'show' from the early days last winter until the armi- 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 291 

"At this hospital I was talven in during a pounding rain. They toolc a complete record of my name, regiment, 
rank, nature and date of wound. Then they stripped me and rubbed me over with a warm sponge. It being the 
first in many days it was very welcome. Then the anti-tetanus injection. Then on a stretcher and put in a row in 
the waiting room off the operating room awaiting my turn. I waited there and with eyes closed tried to get a little 
repose. I heard someone say ' Hello, Colonel ' and beside me was an enlisted man from my old battalion who was a 
runner and who had been hurt after me. 

"Placed on the operating table they saw no need for an operation and putting my leg in a splint turned me into 
a ward. I was put between sheets. — Think of it! Beside me was an officer shot through the stomach and dying, 
across two officers coming out of ether and asking the nurse to hold their hands or smooth their brows. In the next 
ward a bedlam of delerium. 

"I was surprised to find Bill Wood, brother of Chalmers. Bill Wood was with me in college and is here as a chaplain. 

" Early in the morning the man next me died still calling for his wife and children. 

"Pancakes for breakfast and then prepared for evacuation. Our cards containing our history were attached, and 
we were loaded into ambulances and sent to Evacuation No. 10. It was in a pouring rain and the road was terrific. 
I had with me several badly wounded officers who groaned the whole time, and I was not very comfortable, myself, 
so that on the road things were not happy. 

"At the Evacuation Hospital we were handled like pieces of freight. Put on a rack, and when your turn came put 
in front of a checker who carefully noted your record. Then to bed. I was given a room. I was in an old French 
barracks hospital. The nurse was a sister of Rose, the hammer thrower, and looked to me husky enough to handle 
any of us. 

"Two days here, the hospital overflowing, and then we were put on a French train, sixteen of us, officers and men 
in a car. The stretchers and slings were most uncomfortable. We had coffee without milk, canned corn, beef heated, 
and nothing else. I passed it all and dug up some Y. M. C. A. crackers I had been saving. We had a French orderly 
on the train. An old Breton, most obliging. He knew no French yet always knew what the men wanted. All night 
long this patient fellow worked, always awake and always smiling. 

"Early in the morning we arrived here. I have a room with another officer. This was once the American some- 
thing club. A club for American girls studying art. It is in the Latin Quarter. The food is good and wholesome, 
the nurses are not beautiful but nice and competent. My floor is full of generals and colonels, the two other floors 
captains, majors and lieutenants." 

As soon as Lieutenant-Colonel Donovan's leg healed he rejoined his regiment which had gone 
to Coblenz with the Army of Occupation after the signing of the Armistice. He was there com- 
missioned a Colonel of the regiment which fought so gallantly behind him and which he so bravely 

stice was signed, and I know a soldier when I see one. Company D>my company, was in Donovan's battalion, when he was a major, and I had an 
opportunity of knowing him pretty well. 

"We used to discuss him between ourselves and not one man disagreed in the opinion that he would make a record. I have seen him advanc- 
ing with men in places he had no right to be, and there were times when we believed it would be his last fight. I have seen him throw his arms around 
the shoulder of some youngster who was receiving his first 'dose of medicine' from the Hun, and say: 'Buck up, old timer; you are not going 
to let those Dutchmen lick you, are vou? ' Maybe it was the way he said it, but, believe me, a word like that from him, and you would go through 

"I have seen him jump right ahead of a shattered company that had lost all its officers, reorganize it, and lead it into the line again. He was 
always doing things Hke that, and smiling while he was doing it. I noticed in a paper one day an item about Colonel Donovan, and it referred 
to him as 'Wild Bill.' That's dead wrong. He's the coolest man I have ever met. But, what made a hit with the men was, he was always a 
gentleman, and I want to say right now that he's the finest gentleman and the best soldier in the American army." 

The citation on page 1 of General Orders, No. 99, War Department, 1918, relating to Major WilHam J. Donovan, is rescinded and the following 
substituted therefor: 

William J. Donovan, Colonel, IfiSth Infantry. He led his battalion across the river Ourcq and captured important enemy strongholds near 
Villers-sur-Fere, France, on July 28-31, 1918. He was in advance of the division for four days, all the while under shell and machine-gun fire from 
the enemy, who were on three sides of him, and he was repeatedly and persistently counter-attacked, being wounded twice. His coolness, courage 
and efficient leadership rendered possible the maintenance of this position. 

For extraordinary heroism in action near Landres and St. Georges, France, October 14-15, 1918, Colonel Donovan is awarded a bronze oak-leaf 
cluster to be worn with the distinguished service cross. He personally led the assaulting wave in an attack upon a very strongly organized position, 
and when our troops were suffering heavy casualties encouraged all near him by his example, moving among his men in exposed positions, reorgan- 
izing decimated platoons, and accompanying them forward in attacks. When he was wounded in the leg by a machine-gun bullet, he refused 
to be evacuated and continued with his unit until it withdrew to a less exposed position. Home address: Mrs. Ruth Rumsey Donovan, wife, 
742 Delaware Avenue, Buffalo, N. Y. 

292 Buffalo's Part in the World War 



ON October 23d the 106th Field Artillery was on the move to take its position behind the 
79th on the east side of the Meuse. They continued in support until the Armistice was 
signed, virtually firing up until 11 A. M. on the 11th day of November. Captain Gilchriese 
concludes his story, continued from chapter LXXVIII: 

"The following afternoon (October 23d) at 3 P. M. we started on the long march into posi- 
tion behind the 79th Division. As it grew dark early we were perfectly safe in moving at that 
time. We did not clear the woods for an hour, and by the time we were well under way on the 
Verdun highway it was growing dark. We passed under the shadow of the mighty citadel of 
Verdun and then turned north towards Thiville. As we were clearing Verdun, the fact that we 
were in the front again was brought home to us by the old familiar w-h-e-e-e of an "arrive." 
One huge Austrian gun continued to pound out hate on that impregnable old fortress, but it 
never did much damage. 

"Arriving in Charny we had to wait until 8 P. M. before we could cross the River Meuse at 
that place. All crossings of the river are well regulated by the military police, and, as it was cus- 
tomary for Jerry to bombard them at intervals when he thought they were well loaded, of course 
we regulated our traffic accordingly. It was while waiting thus in Charny that we were informed 
that Austria had quit. It certainly was inspiring news. Everyone was more than ever anxious 
to get back to work and show the Hun what a 'fat' chance he had. We arrived in our new 
position on October 29th." 

Corporal Arthur B. Finkelstein, company clerk of Battery E, on November 1st, was taking 
the payroll to the front fine to be signed by the men when a shell landed in the road and blew 
off his leg. He tried to crawl away but another shell come over, this time filling him with shrapnel, 
which caused his death. Captain Grabau. medical man of the regiment, tried everything in his 
power to save him, going out under shell fire. He, also, was wounded. 

Cornelius Driscoll, another Buffalo man, gave up his life there, being burned to death at an 
ammunition dump. 

To resume Captain Gilchriese's narrative: "November 4th, in addition to our regularly 
scheduled shoots, we plastered Jerry all over the country, picking out first a wagon train on the 
road ; then a column of artillery or troops moving out. Jerry was leaving the sector as fast as 
American artillery would let him. You see we were not particularly anxious to have him quit 
at this time — at least not until we had given him a good licking. 

"The next day, November 5th, we caught another battery, and this time with the aid of a 
balloon and ground observer we actually saw him busted up. Later when he tried to get a gun 
out of position we were waiting and gave it to him j^roperly. The observers reported several 
casualties among the working party. 

"That same afternoon, during continuous attacking by our infantry, the German division 
attempted a counter attack. While he was massing his troops on the famous Trench de la Saucette 
we were laying our guns on this same trench, in response to the urgent call from the infantry. 
Just about the time that he was ready to attack, a shower of heavy artillery shells landed on the 
trench. We could not see the result, of course, as it was defiladed from our view but when the 
infantry took the trench the next morning they said it was strewn with dead Germans. We were 
mentioned in orders for this and complimented by the Generals concerned for the accuracy and 
rapidity of our fire. The counter attack blew up in a fizzle. 

"The next morning at 7.45, we gave it to him again. The 79th Division was attacking. At 
10.30 and again at 11.00 we were called on to put machine gun ne.sts out for them which we did 
with great alacrity. 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 293 

"November 9th, two days before the eventful 11th, we moved forward again to the last posi- 
tion we were destined to occupy on this front. Of course it was raining; it always was when 
the battalion moved. And what a position! Our road led through the well known Death Valley, 
made passable during the last few days by the advance of our infantry. We pushed up into the 
ravine below Ormont Farm into the most desolate looking place I had ever seen. The sides of 
the road were torn to pieces; refuse, salvage piles of all sorts were scattered along the route; 
dead, both enemy and American, were to be seen everywhere and everything was ruins. Our 
infantry had just advanced two days before and the burial parties had not yet caught up with 
their work. It was quite gruesome. The search for a battalion command post was a problem. 
The only available dugouts were absolutely untenable, being filled with refuse and dead. In 
addition, they were far up on the slope of a wooded hill, which although desirable from some 
aspects, was not as easily accessible. By nightfall, however, we had ousted some transient engi- 
neers from their comfortable elephant iron shelters and, by virtue of our rank, we occupied them. 
Several dead had to be buried the next morning, but these things were becoming second nature 
to the men of the detail. 

"Having spent the night in the rain and mud, running telephone lines and placing the guns in 
position for the next shoot, we prepared the position for defense the next morning This was 
Sunday, November the 10th, and I will long remember it as a red letter day. It may be interest- 
ing to note here that even at that late date the enemy had not quit fighting, for at four in the 
morning several shells of heavy calibre landed in our vicinity, one of which sprayed our little 
shelter with stones and debris. At 6 A. M. we made coffee from water drawn from a friendly 
shell hole. 

" On scheduled time our guns began. I could have wept for joy. Sitting at the telephone, one 
of the aids reported our progress as it was reported to him from the front lines, and then at four- 
twenty, we lifted the Cote Romange, far in advance of our doughboys and in the main line of 
enemy resistance. The attack was made successfully and with very little loss, and the infantry 
reported our fire had been very destructive. During the night and again on the morning of Novem- 
ber 11th we were called on by our infantry brigade, with the result that we were firing on the 
Hun almost up to the very hour of the cessation of hostilities. 

"I may not mention the casualties other than to say that they were very light. We only had 
three men killed, and not a great number wounded. During our two months in action, the regi- 
ment fired a total of 33,036 rounds amounting to a total weight of 3,072,348 pounds. Our record 
is excellent, we have received the commendation of superior oflScers, from our army corps com- 
mander down." 

The 102d Trench Mortar Battery kept company with the 106th in its course through the 
Meuse-Argonne battle. 

That battery was composed mostly of old I Troop men. Its duty was to dig in on the front 
line and harass the German machine gun nests through the medium of Newton-Stokes six-inch 
trench mortars. The record of the battery is remarkable. While supporting the 33d Division, 
one of its feats was to wipe out completely the town of Hauremont, on the Etrey Road, north 
of Verdun, where a machine gun nest had seriously impeded the progress of the infantry. Three 
shots got the location and the next four cleared the path for the Illinois Division to break the 
Kriemhild-Stellung line. The battery did not serve with the infantry of the 27th Division, but 
was in co-operation with the artillery throughout. Although units of the 27th Division, neither 
the old 65th nor old Troop I served with the Division. They were in the American sector through 
all the activities of the American Expeditionary Force. 

294 Buffalo's Part in the World War 


ON October 18th, Grand Pre was completely in the hands of the 78th Division. The 77th 
had broken down its outer defenses, and, according to their own historians had actually 
taken the town. The 78th Division claims the 77th didn't take a lamp post in Grand Pre. 
The claims of the 78th are not easily dismissed. On the right, the 82d Division had moved up and 
had taken the town of Champigneulles. From the 18th of October to the 1st of November there 
was no general advance on that part of the American front. The time was occupied in local attacks, 
raiding parties and patrols. Many men lost their lives in those adventures, and a number of 
Buffalo boys distinguished themselves during that period. On November 1st the 78th was joined 
by the 77th. For the second time in the Argonne offensive the last named Division was sent 
into the front line. 

The big operation which finally wiped out the Bois de Loges and carried the Americans for- 
ward forty kilometers, w^as started on November 1st with the 77th and 78th sweeping ahead, 
side by side. Just before the big attack the 77th was brought up from the rest area, where the 
men had been putting in about six hours a day drilling, and was placed in reserv^e to fill up a gap 
as the line moved up. The 78th's artillery was put in as support. 

Two days before the attack the 153d Brigade fired every gun at the barrage rate of 200 rounds 
per hour for seven hours, combing through a great forest on the left flank as part of the preparation. 

At zero hour the 78th stepped off from Grand Pre and in front of the Bois de Loges. Machine 
guns stopped one brigade temporarily as these "typewriters" belched their spit of death, but a 
little artillery concentration fixed that patch of woods. 

One of the first men killed as they stepped off that morning was a Buffalo boy, Private Curtiss 
T. Hibbard, D Company, 311th Infantry. His home was at 98 Gelston Street. Hibbard faced 
the machine gunners who had not been reached by the barrage and died firing. 

An interesting account of the last drive of the 78th Division was sent home by Private Shanahan 
of G Company, 311th Infantry, November 12th, 1918: 

"We were in a valley at the foot of the last wooded hill of the famous Argonne Woods. Here 
on the last hill the Germans placed their all. Dotted here and there, every few yards, were 
machine guns; also many machine-gun snipers located in the trees. We established our lines 
along the ridge of this hill. We had remained here for eight days, and during that time I was 
obliged to work both day and night. During the first four days or ninety-six hours I had but five 
hours' sleep. This is almost unbelievable. During the day we helped carry the wounded to the 
first aid, also ammunition and what food we could procure, and during the night stood guard or 
sentry duty, holding the lines with the Germans within hearing distance. We held these lines 
until it was our turn to go over the top again. 

"Well, to make it short, we were tired out the morning of our last trip, which I believe was the 
worst top in the pi'esent war. We were called together at the foot of the hill at 1.00 A. M. and were 
told by our officers we would hear within two hours the greatest barrage in history, which was 
in progress along the entire front. The barrage started at 3.00 A. M. and lasted for many hours. 
During the barrage we made preparations for our last trip over the top. We filled oui- canteens 
with muddy water and were glad to find this water; shell-holes which collect the rain are the means 
of our drinking water at times. We also greased our bodies for protection, or rather relief, from 
mustard gas, as we expected much gas, having a tough section of the front and the Germans were 
not going to give it up without a battle. For a stretch of many miles in back of this last hill was 
nothing but the smooth plains or farm land of beautiful Alsace-Lorraine. We had, as we expected, 
our toughest battle, the Germans had their machine guns lined up everywhere; we began at 5.00 
A. M. and fought until 6.00 P. M. We shot many shells at them and my i-ifie was hot from the 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 


Doughboys Shouting for Joy as Annistiee is Signed 

heat of the continual fire. We lost many men again and this time several boys from Buffalo, 
among them Sergeant Gies,* Private Kuhnkie, Monsees, Sawyerf and a few more who resided in 
the Black Rock section of Bufl'alo. There are but two lads that I know or rather from our locality 
in Buffalo, with me — Jim Morgan and Ed. Nolan; they are both well. After driving the greater 
part of the Germans a few hundred yards away and killing the most of them it was about 6 o'clock, 
or dark. We established ourselves on the spot and jumped into the dug-outs the Germans occupied 
but an hour ago, and there, with our own dead lads and very many Germans lying about, was 
our temporary line. We threw hand grenades at the Germans and blew up many of their machine 
guns. We started after them again the next morning and found — they had 'flown the coop'." 

The 78th had become a combat division of considerable driving power. It had lost many men, 
but had made an exceptionally creditable record, and won commendation from corps and divi- 
sional commanders. 

Just before the "jump off" in the final drive to the Meuse, Corporal Robert D. Lewis of Buffalo, 
won the Distinguished Service Cross, near Grand Pre. His citation reads: 

"Corporal Robert D. Lewis, Company M, 311th Infantry, A. S. No. 174967B. For extraordinary heroism in action near Grand Pre, France, 
October 27, 1918. After his company had reached its objective. Corporal Lewis rendered valuable assistance in organizing positions on ground 
swept by enemy fire. Alone, he flanked a machine gun position and captured two prisoners. While patroling between the outposts he was 
wounded by machine gun fire." 

Corporal Lewis is the son of Mrs. Elizabeth Parker No. 215 Gold street. 


♦"Company G, 311th Infantry, American Expeditionary Force, November ; 
"Mrs. Matilda Gies, 364 East Street, Buffalo, N. Y. 

"My dear Mrs. Gies. — This is the first opportunity I have had to express to you my heart-felt sympathy with you at the death of your son, 
Sergeant Walter E. Gies. 

_" Your son died bravely in the last big American Drive. He died in pursuing retreating Boche, and before his death assisted in the attack 
which drove six German machine guns from a wooded crest. For his bravery under fire, I have recommended the awarding of the Distinguished 
Service Cross. You may well be proud of his record as a soldier and as a man. 

"His memory will live forever among the men of his Company. I feel his loss not only from a military, but also from a personal standpoint. 
He was one of my best boys and we mourn his loss. "Very sincerely yours, 

W. I. Emerson. Captain 311th Infantry." 

t" France, February 27, 1919. 
"My dear Miss Gibsoji. — Received your letter to-day and am answering it immediately. Bill (William Eugene) Sawyer, Company G, 311th 
Infantry, was a very close friend of mine, and I am very sorry to tell you that the reports you have heard of his death are true. Bill was killed 
in action at Grand Pre, France, about the first of November. He and another fellow had hopped into a dugout on the front lines when a shell 
burst at the entrance. A flying piece of shrapnel hit Bill in the head and, also killed his comrade. I was talking to one of the lads of our Company 
to-day who buried Bill — so you see there is no doubt. We lost a great many Buffalo boys there. Bill, like the rest of them, was game to the last. 
Not only myself, but all the rest of our Company extend our svmpathv. Tell his mother he did his dutv and did it well." (Letter from Private 
Leo F. Green, 2nd Bn. Supply Company, 31 1th Infantry.) 

296 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

No one had to "stand and take it" in a heavier way in the Argonne than the members of the 
Military Pohce. On the cross roads, always heavily shelled, they were obliged to direct traffic 
and never had a friendly shell hole in which to seek cover. Lieutenant Scott, a popular Buffalo 
boy who had won a commission at the Officers' Training Camp was killed while on duty with 
the 2d Division, on November 1, 1918. The commander's report follows: 


"Germany, December 20, 1918. 
"My dear Mrs. Scott. — It is my painful duty to write to you concerning the details of the death of your gallant husband, 1st Lieutenant Fay 
M. Scott, 2nd Military Police Company. He was killed by shell fire at 3.40 A. M., November 1, 1918, just north of Fleville, on the main high- 
road between Varrennes and Buzancy. The traffic was very heavy that night, in preparation for the attack on the following morning, and your 
husband had been working along this road all night. The road was under continuous artillery fire a large part of the time, and was frequently 
bombed by hostile airplanes. Sergeant Henry Ballard, 2nd Military Police Company, was with him at the time he was killed. He was buried by 
Chaplain J. N. Pierce, of Division Headquarters, in the American military cemetery in Fleville. His grave is marked by a wooden cross, with 
his name upon it. 

"Your husband was an able officer, and was greatly esteemed and beloved by his comrades-in-arms. 

"Your sincere friend, John A. Lejeune, 

Major GtncraU V. S. M. C, Commanding." 

Corporal Bateman, 133 Livingston Street, distinguished himself in the closing days of the war 
while his division (77th) was driving the Boche toward Sedan. The official citation of his bravery 
tells the story: 

"Corporal Henry Bateman, Headquarters Company. 307th Infantry. For extraordinary heroism in action near St. Pierremont, France, 
November 4, 1918. After passing through a heavily bombarded area Corporal Bateman learned that a soldier of his platoon had been wounded 
and had fallen in the shelled area. He at once volunteered and went back for him, assisted in bringing him to a place of safety and later helped 
to carry him through another shelled area to the first-aid station." 

The 153d Artillery Brigade (78th Division), made up largely of Western New Yorkers, won 
much commendation for its work in the Meuse-Argonne offensive and was chosen to lead off the 
big barrage in the final phase. 

The plans for the attack on November 1st were most carefully made, and a schedule of advance 
was laid down. One regiment of Seventy-fives of the brigade was to limber up and move out 
of its old positions at four hours after H hour, and two battalions of the heavy regiment were to 
pack on their B. G.-5 powder and hike forward at five hours after H hour. The infantry was to 
have cleared the way by that time. 

A knowledge of the topography of the ten-ain, to use military language, is necessary to com- 
prehend what happened that morning. All the old battery positions were behind a hill, but the 
road to be followed in the movement forward twisted around the shoulder of this hill through a 
little town called Senuc, and into direct observation from the enemy — that is, in direct observa- 
tion unless the infantry had moved the enemy. 

According to schedule the 307th Field Artillery limbered up and took the road, followed by 
the other units, with Major B. G.-5 Wilder in the lead. Rounding the turn at a trot, as prescribed 
in open warfare, this artillery stepped face to face with the Boche. 

It is a tradition of the brigade that it never took a backward step, although the situation pre- 
sented a fine opportunity for a panic, with guns and ammunition wagons and trucks clustered 
as a target. The batteries went into positions along the Aire River without any attempt to camou- 
flage, and combed the Bois de Loges with a fire that put the fear of God into the Boche machine 
gunners and permitted the infantry to advance. There were some losses, but shortly the Hun 
went back so fast it was impossible for the infantry to keep up with him. 

The ammunition trucks of the 303d Ammunition Train were right up with the artillery, carry- 
ing a day's fire for the brigade, which is 300 rounds per gun for the 75s and 150 rounds per gun 
for the 155s. 

The 77th, 42d, 2d, 89th, 90th and 5th Divisions were in the front line then as replacements 
for tired fighters. This was the second trip up to the front for several of the divisions. General 
Pershing tells of the final phase of this offensive and of the war: 

"With comparatively well-rested divisions, the final advance in the Meuse-Argonne front was 
begun on November 1st. Our increased artillery force acquitted itself magnificently in support 
of the advance, and the enemy broke before the determined infantry, which, by its persistent 
fighting of the past weeks and the dash of this attack, had overcome his will to resist. The Third 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 


Gun that Fired the Last Shot 

Corps took Aincreville, Doulcon, and Andevanne, and the Fifth Corps took Landres et St. Georges 
and pressed through successive hnes of resistance to Bayonville and Chennery. On the 2d the 
First Corps joined in the movement, which now became an impetuous onslaught that could not 
be stayed. 

"On the 3d advance troops surged forward in pursuit, some by motor trucks, while the artillery 
pressed along the country roads close behind. The First Corps reached Authie and Chatillon- 
Sur-Bar, the Fifth Corps, Fosse and Nouart, and the Third Corps Halles, penetrating the enemy's 
line to a depth of 12 miles. Our large calibre guns had advanced and were skillfully brought 
into position to fire upon the important lines at Montmedy, Longuyon, and Conflans. Our Third 
Corps crossed the Meuse on the 5th and the other corps, in the full confidence that the day was 
theirs, eagerly cleared the way of machine guns as they swept northward, maintaining complete 
coordination throughout. On the 6th, a division of the First Corps (42d Division) reached a 
point on the Meuse opposite Sedan, 25 miles from our line of departure. The strategical goal 
which was our highest hope was gained. We had cut the enemy's main line of communications, 
and nothing but surrender or an armistice could save his army from complete disaster. 

" In all 40 enemy divisions had been used against us in the Meuse- Argonne Battle. Between 
September 26th and November 6th we took 26,059 prisoners and 468 guns on this front. Our 
Divisions engaged were the 1st, 2d, 3d, 4th, 5th, 26th, 28th, 29th, 32d, 33d, 35th, 37th, 42d, 77th, 
78th, 79th, 80th, 82d, 89th, 90th, and 91st. Many of our divisions remained in line for a length 
of time that required nerves of steel, while others were sent in again after only a few days of 
rest. The 1st, 5th, 26th, 42d, 77th, 80th, 89th, and 90th were in the line twice. Although some 
of the divisions were fighting their first battle, they soon became equal to the best. 

"On the three days preceding November 10th, the Third, the Second Colonial, and the Seven- 
teenth French Corps, fought a difficult struggle through the Meuse Hills south of Stenay and 
forced the enemy into the plain. Meanwhile, my plans for further use of the American forces 

298 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

contemplated an advance between the Meuse and the Moselle in the direction of Longwy by the 
First Army, while, at the same time, the Second Army should assume the offensive toward the 
rich iron fields of Briey. These operations were to be followed by an offensive toward Chateau- 
Salins east of the Moselle, thus isolating Metz. Accordingly, attacks on the American front had 
been ordered and that of the Second Army was in progress on the morning of November 11th, 
when instructions were received that hostilities should cease at 11 o'clock A. M. 

"At this moment the line of the American sector, from right to left, began at Port-Sur-Seille, 
thence across the Moselle to Vandieres and through the Woevre to Bezonvaux in the foothills 
of the Meuse, thence along to the foothills and through the northern edge of the Woevre forests 
to the Meuse at Mouzay, thence along the Meuse connecting with the French under Sedan." 

Buffalo's Part in the World War 299 


WHEN America entered the war the "Tank" as an instrument of warfare was not in general 
use in the American Army. Barbed wire entrenchments, serious impediments to an 
offensive, required the invention of some means of destruction. The manufacture of tanks 
then began. American-made tanks were rapidly coming to hand in France at the time the Armi- 
stice was signed, but few, if any American tanks had been used during the war. Some Buffalo 
boys, however, saw service in the Tank Corps, using "baby" French machines, their branch of 
the service being referred to as the "Treat 'em Rough" crew. 

Seven Buffalo boys picked up at Camp Dix were assigned in France to the 304th Brigade, 
Tank Corps, U. S. A. They served with the Fourth French Army Corps until relieved on the 10th 
of September, and were then attached to the First American Army Corps, being assigned for 
service in the Meuse-Argonne campaign. 

The 77th Division was attached to the First Army Corps, but a complete reconnaissance of 
the front included between the "Foret D'Argonne and the Bois de Cheppy" revealed that tanks 
could not enter into the work cut out for the 77th Division. It was determined that the character 
of the terrain east of the Aire River and adjacent to it was the least unfavorable ground in the 
area for the use of tanks, and since tanks were to be used they should be used on that front. 

The Coips included three tank battalions, each battalion consisting of three combat companies 
and one headquarters company and one repair and salvage company. In all 169 tanks were sent 
to the Argonne front. The first groups arrived at the detraining point on the night of September 
17th; the last group on the 23d, detraining under shell fire. The detraining point was a station 
yard at Clermont. The tanks containing the Buffalo boys were assigned to attack with the 35th 
Division. Their point of departure was a small wood about four kilometers north of Avancourt 

Due to the serious resistance encountered along the eastern edge of the Forest, especially in 
the vicinity of Cheppy and Varrennes, and due to the lack of support of the infantry in that 
section all the tanks had entered into action before evening of the fii'st day. Colonel Patton was 
injured while getting the tanks forward and rallying disorganized infantrymen. The resistance 
encountered during the day was severe. The tanks, however, succeeded in reducing numerous 
machine gun nests which had proven troublesome and sometimes fatal to the infantry ad- 
vance. The first tanks reached Varrennes at 9.30 A. M., but the infantry did not get in until 
1.30 in the afternoon. On the morning of the 27th, thirteen tanks of that brigade were out of 

Some tanks got off on the west side of the Aire River where the 77th Division was operating, 
and, skirting along the edge of the Forest, knocked over a number of machine gun nests; captured 
a number of prisoners — all machine gunners. They were turned over to the infantry. On the 
morning of the 28th eighty-three tanks were ready for operation, and practically every division 
had in a request for tank assistance. The difficulty of the terrain, however, impeded the work 
of the tanks, while machine gun nests impeded the advance of the infantry. 

The tank leaders report that on September 28th the tanks took the town of Apremont five 
times before the infantry would enter, consolidate and exploit the success. The tanks continued 
in operation through the entire Argonne fight, and rendered splendid assistance. From October 
16th to November 1st, the provisional company remained in reserve at Exermont. On November 
1st fifteen tanks took part in the general advance, five being directed against St. Georges and the 
balance against Landres-et-St. Georges. The work of the tanks in that advance was commended 
highly by the Commanding General of the Second Division, with whom they were then operat- 
ing. Three of those tanks penetrated as far as the corps objective, and one entered the northern 

300 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

outskirts of Buzancy. North of Landres-et-St. Georges three tanks flanked and captured a 
battery of 77's complete. 

The Buffalo boys assigned to the Tank Corps served through the entire Argonne campaign. 

The only Buffalo officer in the American Tank Corps of whom we have a record was Lorenzo 
F. Ward of 112 Bird Avenue. Sergeant Frank J. Williams who won the Distinguished Service 
Cross served with the British in a battle tank used against the Hindenburg line. Ward went 
away from Buffalo with the Selective Service Detachment of September 26th, 1917, proceeding 
to Camp Dix where he remained until the following .January, sailing on the U. S. Transport 
Huron, arriving at Brest on February 5th. He went across with a casualty company intended 
as a replacement for the First Division, but a number of the men were transferred to the 41st 
(Sunset) Division. About the middle of February a call was made for volunteers to serve in the 
Tank Corps, and seven Buffalo men offered their services out of that Selective Service detach- 
ment. Ward being among them. They went into training for tank service immediately and were 
so engaged up to about August 20th when the Divisional Brigade Tank Corps was organized. Buffalo 
boys with their tanks went into the support of 26th Division on the right at St. Mihiel and later 
they moved over to the left of the line where they operated with the 42d Division and the 1st 
Regular Army Division. For his services in liaison work at that time. Private Ward was advanced 
to the rank of Corporal and he was acting as a runner with Colonel Patton in the early days of 
the Argonne Drive, supporting the 77th and 35th Divisions. He was with Colonel Patton at the 
time the latter was wounded. In the fighting that followed, while carrying a message as a corps 
runner for division headquarters, he was lost within the German lines and spent the time from 
10 o'clock one morning until 4 P. M. the following day crawling under brush to bring his message 
through. For that service he was promoted to Sergeant on October 24th, and after the armistice 
was signed was given charge in moving the Brigade from France to the United States in the 
capacity of Sergeant Major, and also had charge of overseeing the work of demobilization. The 
Corps was discharged on April 11th, 1919. 


Buffalo's Part in the World War 301 



ANY Buffalo and Western New York boys entered the chemical branch of the service, 
and most of them were sent either to laboratories for instructions in gas manufacture, 
or to the plants where gas was manufactured. One of the largest gas plants was located 
at Niagara Falls. While chemical experts were thus employed, it was reserved for Raymond J. 
Geitner, chauffeur, 1.55 Lutheran Street and one other Buffalo boy to land in the 1st Gas Regi- 
ment. Geitner enhsted August 25th, 1917, as a mechanical chauffeur, and left Buffalo within a 
few days for Fort Slocum. He never engaged in any of the duties of a mechanical chauffeur, for 
he was sent from Fort Slocum to the American University at Washington and started in with 
gas training. 

The 1st Gas Regiment was formed there, and, after two months' intensive training, left on 
December 25th, 1917, for France. They arrived at Brest on the 9th day of January. 1918, and 
went direct to the British front where they went into actual training on the line. The need for 
speed was occasioned by the shortage of gas workers and as there were none back of the line, 
they were forced to go up to the front to continue their work. There they engaged for two months 
in actual warfare on the line, with mustard gas, phosgene gas and a tear gas. They also worked 
with thermite burning out machine gun nests. Thermite was used in a shell shot out of a trench 
mortar of the Stokes type. They also used TNT. 

After working on the line for two months they returned to Lavilla-aux-Boies, about six miles 
from Chaumont, where they met Companies C and D of the gas regiment and gave them a train- 
ing, returning then to the American sector. The First Gas Regiment was engaged at Chateau 
Thierry, St. Mihiel and the battle of the Argonne. They were in the line from the 7th day of 
May until the 11th day of November and saw a great deal of service. Speaking of their work 
Geitner said: 

"Two weeks before the Chateau Thierry drive we started to shell with gas and sent over 34 
tons of gas. As a result it took the Germans four days to carry out their dead and wounded. 
In this operation we lost only one American officer. This was due to the explosion of a gun. The 
Stokes Mortar which we used for gas was merely a big iron tube and the shells were set off in 
these by exploders. There was considerable play in the bore and the shells were a little rough. 
When the shell was about to go oft' everyone would have to get away from it as quickly as possible. 
Sometimes they were only set off once a night, and if the enemy didn't succeed in destroying 
the gun the next day or possibly the same night, we would i-ecover it for use the next night. The 
Chateau Thierry shoot took in about 800 guns which were shooting over gas, TNT, etc." 

(The information for that barrage. General Bundy reports, was obtained from an old mason 
who knew which buildings in the town had cellars under them. The Germans were hiding in 
those cellars and the American artillery missed none of them. It was a most efficient barrage.) 

"In the St. Mihiel drive we worked continuously from the 12th until the 17th of September 
sending over high explosives, putting up smoke screens for the infantry and burning out machine 
gun nests with thermite. The same sort of work was done in the Argonne Forest. This gas was 
brought up to our regiment in tanks on motor trucks and we then placed it in shells. Some was 
in the form of paste, and the balance in powder form. We carried it into position ourselves. 
Sometimes this was for a distance of two to four miles. After the gas was put in the shells and 
these were in position the timers and exploders were put on the shells. They were then placed in 
the guns and set off by exploders. These guns were anywhere from 12" to 14". The shells we 
used weighed from 90 to 100 pounds, and we would send over our material in conjunction with 
the artillery in a barrage. 

"The work of our gas regiment was done either from the first line or as far as 250 yards in 

302 Buffalo's Part in the World War 

advance of the first line. We worked in platoons, 60 men to a platoon and these 60 men would 
take care of from 400 to 600 guns. This refers to Stokes Mortars. 

"When we used the trench mortars we would pile the shells along side of us and five men worked 
in a team with one gun and we would explode from 18 to 25 shells a minute continuously for a 
half hour. Then we would rest perhaps for two hours and then continue at the same rate of fire. 
This we kept up nightly for periods of ten hours' duration. That was not only with gas, but included 
thermite and TNT and these operations would be carried on from the most advanced position 
possible. Our shells would take effect from 10 to 2,200 yards distance. 

"The TNT I spoke of was used in shrapnel shells, but the kind of shrapnel shells we used 
exploded a short distance from the ground. We were